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Ten earthquake-damaged schools in Calexico to open sooner than planned.


Ten of the earthquake-damaged public schools in the Imperial Valley border town of Calexico will reopen Wednesday, Calexico schools Supt. Christina Luna announced Monday.

The schools had not been expected to reopen until next Monday at the earliest.

Only Calexico High School and Jefferson Elementary School will remain closed. Luna said she hopes the high school can reopen Monday. No decision has yet been made about Jefferson, the most severely damaged of the district's schools,

High winds have hampered the cleanup of asbestos at Calexico High and Jefferson Elementary, Luna said.

All of the Calexico Unified School District schools have been closed since a 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck the border region on April 4, Easter Sunday, Multiple aftershocks added to the damage. Teachers and administrators have scrambled to provide lesson plans for the district's 9,500 students during the closure.

"We understand the frustration of students, parents and teachers over the length of time it has taken to resume classes," Luna said.

---Tony Perry in San Diego

Photo: Calexico School Supt. Christina Luna points to damage at Jefferson Elementary, where earthquakes brought asbestos, mercury and other debris crashing to the floor. Credit: Don Bartletti / Los Angeles Times

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