Teachers help fellow educators set up new classrooms after Robert E. Lee Elementary destroyed by fire

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – The cafeteria at Lockhart Elementary School in Tampa was turned into a supply center Friday. 

Teachers rummaged through things like books, markers and pencils as they gear up for a new start. Not a start to the school year, but a start in a new school.

“We will continue and persevere through this,” said teacher Krista Corbin-Keith.

Robert E. Lee Elementary School, where Corbin-Keith taught for two years, is in ruins, destroyed by fire Tuesday night.

Teachers and students will begin class Monday at nearby Lockhart since their school is no more.

For hours Friday, teachers from all over the Hillsborough County School District helped teachers from Lee set up their new classrooms.

“I am totally just overwhelmed with joy at the fact some many people came together,” Corbin-Keith said.

People like Sessums Elementary School teacher Christin Henrichs.

“It’s amazing,” Henrichs said. “It really is. Just walking in and getting to see the out pour of everything. I would want it done for me as a teacher,” she said.

The superintendent couldn’t be prouder.

“I think one of the things you see is you see people step up, and that’s the thing I’m taking away from this,” Jeff Eakins said.

Corbin-Keith hopes her students take away a lesson as well.

Soon, they’ll read the book “Rain School,” which depicts a school in Africa ruined by heavy rains. It’s a lesson in perseverance and overcoming hardships.

“It’ll be a great connection. This is like our Rain School, right here,” she said.

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