District developing contingency plans in case of delayed Athens High School completion

ATHENS, Ala. - A wet summer caused delays on the construction of the new Athens High School.

More than 200 construction workers are on site everyday now, as the district tries to fully catch up.

"They ran into a few delays a couple months back with the rain, the mason work was postponed a little bit," said Chris Hamilton, the communications director for Athens City Schools.

She says the project is about 35% done, and that, according to the project manager, it will be smooth sailing once the roof is in place and protecting the interior of the building from the elements.

Hamilton explains the timeline was always close, and they now work to develop contingency plans just in case it's not done when the first school bell rings in the fall of 2018.

"We're looking at the possibility of putting some of our students the old middle school building," said Hamilton. "As well as, we're working with Athens State College to see if they have any classroom space available that we might could use."

She went on to explain that the district's access to technology could make it easy for a good chunk of schooling to be done from home during the interim period. She also mentioned the split sessions used decades ago when the current Athens High was being built. In that scenario, she explained, a first group of students would go to class in the morning and a second wave would attend in the afternoon.

District officials say contractors have recovered some of the days lost, and hope to be done by late September or October.