Philadelphia School District announces relocation plan for students displaced by asbestos discovery

The Philadelphia School District announced a student relocation plan Thursday after an asbestos infestation forced two Center City schools to close.

Superintendent Dr. William Hite said students from Benjamin Franklin High School will go to Khepera Charter School on the 900 block of West Sedgley. Meanwhile, Hite said students from Science Leadership Academy will go to two different locations on North Broad Street; Rodeph Shalom on the 600 block and a district building on the 400 block.

Students from the Benjamin Franklin and the neighboring Science Leadership Academy evacuated their shared building after workers discovered harmful material while working on a $37 million reconstruction project.

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The new locations were selected by a district appointed task force made up of teachers, staff, students parents and principles. Superintendent Hite said the locations meet capacity and logistics standards that both schools required.

Hite went on to say the Ben Franklin and Science Leadership Academy will remain closed until reconstruction is complete and safety requirements are met. Hite estimates the schools new campus will reopen after winter break.

The latest asbestos test results from inside the school have been positive, according to Hite.