WEST MILTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Officials at Milton-Union schools are working to help their tornado-affected students get ready for the fast-approaching school year.
According to Brad Ritchey, superintendent for Milton-Union Exempted Village Schools, the district is trying to identify families forced to live outside the school district and figure out the cost of transporting those students.
In May, the district canceled the last three days of school following the tornadoes, Ritchey said.
The first day of school is August 21, Ritchey said, and district officials and community members are working to help affected students as much as they can.
“There’s a lot of need for cash flow at the time,” said Heather Bland with the Laura / West Milton Disaster Relief group. “There’s a lot of people that are either not insured or under-insured.”
Bland grew up in West Milton and chose to get involved with relief efforts after her childhood home was destroyed.
She and others volunteering with the Laura / West Milton Disaster Relief group are working to help local students.
“We’re trying to identify who exactly all of the children are so that they can get a hold of transportation and make sure that they’re getting to and from school okay,” Bland said.
The school administration is working to find out how many students have been displaced, Ritchey said.
“We do know that we have a few students that have been affected significantly,” he said.
Ritchey said he is confident the district can accommodate displaced students now living outside the school district.
So far, enrollment has not been significantly impacted, though the district has received applications for students from other districts, he added.
“We have seen some open enrollment applications, not in large numbers, but just based on the addresses we have wondered if it’s because of storm damage,” Ritchey said.
The Laura / West Milton Disaster Relief group is still collecting monetary donations for tornado relief, and they are also accepting donations of school supplies for the affected students.
If you’d like to make a monetary donation, you can send it to:
Milton-Union Council of Churches
65 Sandstone Ln.
West Milton, OH 45383
Checks should be made payable to Milton-Union Council of Churches.
If you’d like to donate school supplies or other items, send a message to the Laura / West Milton Disaster Relief group on Facebook.