Rice school district closed after EF-2 tornado

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by JONATHAN BETZ

WFAA

Posted on October 26, 2010 at 7:50 PM

RICE - While videos that captured the EF-2 tornado in Rice revealed a very menacing looking storm, there were only minor injuries suffered.

That was the case in all the areas hit by the four tornadoes that touched down across North Texas Sunday.

Jason McLaughin was among those who was able to record the tornado as it ripped apart everything in its path. Among the worst hit was Rice Intermediate School. Classes were canceled in the entire district for the rest of the week, which hasn't sat well with some parents.

Amber Estes says she now has a full house all day.

"Just play, wear them out and put them to bed," she said of taking care of her five children. "... I don't know why they closed it when the school wasn't damaged."

Rice administrators decided to shut down the entire school district for five days after the tornado ripped apart its new intermediate school. Superintendent Judith Pritchett said she believed shutting down all three of the district's schools would be easier for parents.

"If we don't close the whole school district, then we have kids staying home to care for little ones," she said.

While there has been no school, football practice has still been on. Tuesday, students ran drills next to their damaged stadium.

"It hurts pretty bad," said Eric Hughes, a student. "We played a bunch of games there and then not able to finish season there. It's pretty wrong."

The team's home game on Friday will likely be played at a neighboring stadium.

"We got other things to worry about," said the coach. "We got to get kids in classrooms and that's the main thing."

As the district seeks aid to help rebuild, Pritchett said there is still a chance there may be no school Monday.

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