Columbine High School Will Stay Standing After Talk Of Demolition

Joe Mahoney/AP
A patrol car is parked in front of Columbine High School, Wednesday, April 17, 2019, in Littleton, Colo.

A district proposal to demolish and rebuild Columbine High School was pitched in June, but Jefferson County Schools said the school will stay standing.

“I do not believe there is sufficient support to move forward with a proposal to rebuild the school,” Superintendent Jason Glass wrote in a letter sent Wednesday. “In the course of our discussions, this option was considered and evaluated and other options and proposals also came forward.”

The school continues to have a problem with unauthorized visitors since the 1999 shooting that killed 12 students and a teacher. Glass previously told CPR News the fascination with the school building requires intense monitoring and enforcement. 

Glass said the school will enhance its security with the creation of an improved defined perimeter around the building to help further mitigate the problem. Security upgrades at Columbine will be funded by the 5B bond program money voters approved in 2018 and existing district capital improvement funds.

The survey the district sent in June shows that nearly 7,000 respondents were split on deciding the school's ultimate fate. More than half reacted negatively to a rebuild and felt it was not important. When surveyors were asked what they liked best from the proposal, most people wanted to keep the school’s name. At the same time, 30 percent said they least liked keeping the school's name.

Almost 60 percent said they would likely vote “No” on a ballot initiative to fund a rebuild of the school with bond dollars.

In a letter sent to Columbine families on Wednesday, Principal Scott Christy said that safety has been his primary concern since the beginning.

"The safety of our students and staff is paramount and we have an outstanding security staff and surveillance system that is top notch in keeping our school safe," he wrote. "After the planned improvements and safety upgrades are completed, Columbine will be even more safe."