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Falling Further Behind

Bob Herbert - One section of the Maytown Elementary School in rural Maytown, Pa., was built in 1861. Another section was built in the late-1920s. There’s a time clock in the ancient gym that was donated by the class of 1946.

This is a school that could use an update. No, scratch that. It needs to be replaced.

Shelly Riedel, superintendent of the Donegal School District, which includes Maytown, told me that teachers can’t mount smart boards in their classrooms because of the asbestos “encapsulated” behind the walls. The asbestos is not dangerous as long as the walls are not disturbed. The electricity is not particularly reliable. A teacher who is using, say, an overhead projector has to check to make sure that other teachers are not using similar devices at the same time as that might cause an outage.

There is no air conditioning. And there is no money right now to replace the school, which has an enrollment of 237. Read more.

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