School district deals with its staff, students losing homes |

School district deals with its staff, students losing homes

William Ferchland

South Tahoe High School glows as the wildfire burns just behind it on Sunday night. / Trevor Clark / Tahoe Daily Tribune

Sixteen Lake Tahoe Unified School District employees, from teachers to support staff, lost their homes in the Angora fire.

In addition, 37 students in the district were affected by the fire.

The numbers, compiled by Superintendent Jim Tarwater, underscore the fire’s reach, but bring little concern about staffing or enrollment figures for next school year, Tarwater said.

“At this point that is not an issue with me,” he said.

“The issue is how to support the people at this time.”

The district has battled the effects of declining enrollment for more than five years.

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With enrollment leveling a bit after the 2006-’07 school year, it could take another hit from the fire.

During a community meeting this week at South Tahoe Middle School, Tarwater volunteered as a parking attendant.

Tarwater is pondering instituting curriculum at the Lake Tahoe Environmental Science Magnet School, where he is principal and whose campus is near the fire line, regarding wildfires and defensible space.

In related news, summer school is scheduled to begin Monday after being postponed twice.