Daily Planet Staff reports
Berkeley High School has been granted $350,000 through the Federal Safe School Initiative to install comprehensive intercom and fire safety systems.
“I am delighted that the House and Senate approved these funds for Berkeley High School. We need these funds to supplement the safety systems the school has installed this year. This money will help ensure the safety of our Berkeley High School students,” Mayor Shirley Dean said. “The people of Berkeley are very grateful for Senator Boxer’s efforts.”
Dean wrote to Boxer in March requesting federal funds to acquire a working alarm and communication system at the high school.
In the last two years, Berkeley High School has had serious arson fires that went undetected for some time due to the lack of a working alarm system. Students and staff literally did not have warning about one fire until smoke began to waft into classrooms from a nearby supply room fire.
Teachers and staff hastily evacuated the building without injury, but the circumstances were very disturbing. The damage from the April 2000 fire is estimated at $1 million.