China completes reconstruction of middle school toppled in 2008 quake

14:29, August 17, 2010      

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Chinese workers have completed the reconstruction of a middle school destroyed by the powerful earthquake that rocked many parts of Sichuan and neighboring provinces in west China in May 2008.

A special ceremony was held Tuesday to mark the completion of the rebuilding of Beichuan Middle School.

The school was in one of the areas hardest hit by the magnitude-8.0 earthquake which left about 87,000 people dead or missing.

The quake killed or left missing more than 1,300 of the school's 2,900 students and teachers.

The school's students who survived the quake have been studying at temporary pre-fabricated classrooms in Mianyang City.

The reconstruction of the school has been completed in time for the new school semester that begins in September. Students will take classes in the rebuilt school then.

"I like the new campus, especially the big playgrounds," said senior student Yang Sihan.

Tang Gaoping, a 47-year-old physics teacher at the school, said, "Now we have better laboratories for physics and many new instruments to do experiments."

The new Beichuan Middle School campus is also equipped with facilities for the disabled, as the quake handicapped some students.

The school covers an area of 15 hectares and has a combined floor space of 720,000 square meters. It can accommodate 5,200 students, according to the local authorities.

Reconstruction of the school started on May 12, 2009, the first anniversary of the devastating earthquake.

The school is located in Yongchang County, to where all of Beichuan County was relocated to.

Donations fully financed the school's 200 million yuan (29 million U.S. dollars) cost for reconstruction.

Source: Xinhua


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