Knott County students head back to school following devastating flooding

Weekday broadcast of WYMT Mountain News at 6
Published: Sep. 19, 2022 at 12:23 PM EDT
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HINDMAN, Ky. (WYMT) - Nearly two months after devastating flooding, the doors to the schools in one Eastern Kentucky county are back open.

“You know, there were days where I thought we’ll never get there and then there were days where I thought, wow, I can’t believe the progress that’s being made,” said Hindman Elementary School Principal Brandi Sims.

On Monday, eager educators at Hindman Elementary School welcomed back students in a day many of them were not even sure would even happen.

“Seeing and working with the kids this morning and interacting with them, its just been amazing,” said Brent Hoover, Knott County Schools Superintendent.

All schools in Knott County opened on Monday, several weeks later than planned due to needed repairs following the disaster in late July.

“At the beginning, I spoke with some folks from FEMA and they said the first step is to pick the sticks up and the second step is to get school buses rolling, and so we have completed the second step,” added Hoover.

As students walked through the doors they were met with excitement and relief from faculty and staff who are excited to regain some normalcy, too.

“Just seeing their smiling faces walking through the door and the excitement of seeing their room for the first time and their school, seeing their friends; its just really made a difference and I think it has made a difference in all of our lives to be back together again,” said Holly Slone, a kindergarten teacher at Hindman Elementary.

Sims said teachers have been in the school from sun up to sun down for the past week preparing their classrooms. She added seeing the students’ today made all the hard work worth it.