West Philly schools cleared to reopen

After a massive fire tore through a West Philadelphia apartment building Monday, environmental specialists gave the OK yesterday for neighboring schools to reopen Wednesday.

The five-alarm fire ripped through the Windermere Court Apartments at 48th and Walnut streets, across the street from West Philadelphia High School.

Henry Lea Elementary School at 47th and Locust streets and the high school were evaluated by school district and union environmental officials yesterday and cleared to reopen Wednesday.

Surfaces in the school were cleaned and windows were opened to air out any smoke that got in during the fire, according to school district spokesman Shana Kemp.

As for whether any schools will open Wednesday thanks to the snow, Kemp said the district will make an announcement between 4 a.m. and 5 a.m. Wednesday "once we've assessed the situation."