'We are a school, hopefully in perpetuity'; Cordia School officials say legal fight could be over for good

LOTTS-CREEK, Ky. (WYMT) - A major ruling came down Wednesday in favor of Cordia School, meaning its community involvement continues.

"We are a school, hopefully in perpetuity," Alice Whitaker, the Lotts-Creek Community School's (LCCS) director said.

The Benny Ray Bailey law states a settlement school cannot be closed unless there are health concerns, which were discovered not long ago.

"Feces [were] in the ceiling, right over there," Whitaker said.

Those issues no longer exist, meaning the Knott County Board of Education (KCBOE) must allow for Cordia's doors to remain open.

"It was almost like, it has to be," Whitaker said. "You know, this school has to be here."

Superintendent Kim King says KCBOE plans to work with Lotts-Creek Community. First, by drafting a lease both parties agree with.

Whitaker says she foresees few changes.

"The only one that I am concerned about is the repair and cleanliness of the building because obviously the building belongs to Lotts-Creek Community Schools and I want it to last a long time. I probably will have a little bit more in there about upkeep and repair," she said.

Ten days are given to prepare a draft. The school board has 10 days to respond.

Though the problem is resolved, one still remains. Enrollment declined from nearly 230 students to approximately 175.

"But [as] the judge said, it was two weeks prior to the school starting and nobody knew whether or not it was a school. So a lot of parents moved their children. They're coming back little by little but we need to emphasize that we are here to stay," Whitaker said.

King says she is happy to report that all repairs from earlier damage are almost complete.

Whitaker says they are currently awaiting settlements to arrive allowing them to build a new gym and roof.

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