Engineering reports show school facility administrators were aware of wall cracks and needed repairs years before the emergency closure of two Glendale schools this week.
Landmark School and Challenger Middle School both closed Monday due to concern the walls could crumble and endanger students. Hundreds of kids stayed home while Glendale Elementary School District administrators found temporary school sites.
ABC15 has obtained a 2011 report about Landmark titled "Masonry Wall Cracks Investigation." The report recommended minor repairs and warned there could be structural concerns in the future.
ABC15 found other building inspection and engineering reports dating from 2014, 2015 and 2016. Some reports included pictures of the schools' cement façades chipped away enough to see heavily rusted rebar wall supports.
The Glendale Elementary District asked the Arizona School Facilities Board for money to repair both Landmark and Challenger a year ago.
ABC15 reached out to the school district and the state board for more details on why major repairs were not approved until after the campuses were forced to close. As of 7 p.m., the district had not replied.
Repairs to the schools' foundations and walls are expected to take five weeks. During that time, students will attend half-day classes at two other schools.