The Guilford County Board of Education voted to close Hampton Elementary School permanently due to tornado damage and other issues affecting the aging school.
The board voted to close the school after hearing a report from Superintendent Sharon Contreras. In it, she also cited the concern that soil in the school's vicinity had been disrupted after last spring's tornado. Hampton was built in the 1960s, adjacent to a landfill monitored by state regulators.
Board member Byron Gladden voted against closing Hampton Elementary because of its importance to the Hampton community.
"I know those who elected me, all 26,000 of them, and Hampton should stay and if there should be a clear idea for Hampton, [it] should come back, not at another location, but at Hampton Elementary," he said.
Darlene Garrett was another one of three board members who voted to keep Hampton open.
"They [community] would want us to do whatever we can to make sure we fix what's wrong, soil and rebuild the school because it's so important to the community," she said.
Two other elementary schools – Peeler Elementary and Erwin Elementary – were also damaged during the 2018 tornado, but they will not be closed permanently.
Hampton is closing at the end of this school year. Approximately 50 student who were set to return next school year will be reassigned to Reedy Fork Elementary in the fall.