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CCHS dismisses students on Tuesday due to gas leak

Superintendent says "after-action review" will be conducted to smooth the pickup process



Cove Leader-Press


Classes were dismissed early from Copperas Cove High School on Tuesday, but what flustered some parents wasn’t so much that students were dismissed for the day due to the gas leak, but the long lines and lengthy process to release students to their parents.

Lines reportedly stretched from the high school on Avenue D all the way to South 1st Street in Copperas Cove.

On Tuesday morning, a contractor doing site work for the district’s new career-technology building inadvertently hit a gas line. Thus, the school was unable to provide lunch to students and also had to turn off the air conditioning in a section of the high school.

The impacted area, which included the fine arts wing, the athletic annex, and the new gym were all evacuated immediately, and students and staff were relocated to the cafeteria.

Then came the matter of students being released. Those students with vehicles in the cafeteria parking lot were able to leave the campus and drive home, but others who were parked in the annex parking lot could not return and move their cars until after 1 p.m. Busses were summoned for bus riders and those who otherwise did not have a ride available.

Lines formed of parents arriving to pick up their students, from staff at the front and rear entrances of the high school. Students were called only when their parent or guardian arrived and requested their student.  

CCISD Superintendent Joe Burns issued a letter to parents on Tuesday afternoon that was also distributed to local media, thanking the parents for their “patience and understanding as everyone worked through the student pickup issues today at Copperas Cove High School.”

As the gas company initially wasn’t able to give a timeline for repair, Burns said the decision was made to release the students for the day.

“I apologize for the long lines and wait times experienced by our parents and others picking up students.”

He said he has heard from many of them, and he understands wanting the process to be smoother, faster, and less cumbersome.

“We will be conducting an after-action review and would appreciate any constructive feedback you would like to provide. Feel free to email me at,” Burns stated.

The repairs have been made to the gas line and classes will be in session as usual at the high school on Wednesday.


Copperas Cove Leader Press

2210 U.S. 190
Copperas Cove, TX 76522
Phone:(254) 547-4207