It started out as every other anything-but-ordinary day at the I PROMISE School. Warm hugs, high fives, and smiles all around despite the freezing cold temperatures outside. While our students were hard at work in the classrooms under the care of their committed teachers, a frozen pipe gave way to flooded floors and blocked hallways that required immediate evacuation. Without hesitation, the IPS teachers, staff, and Akron Public Schools officials rallied to facilitate the safe and timely transport of every single student and staff member to nearby North High School. Determined as the best location to house our students, the staff at North opened its doors and its arms to our family like they were their own, making the potentially chaotic scene a seamless experience.

While parents began to retrieve their kids with Principal Davis at the helm, several APS staff members worked with our own Jon Erisey to quickly repair and return their home at I PROMISE School to normalcy. Within hours of the event, thanks to the team’s hard work and dedication, the floors were shined and calm restored as if nothing happened.

But the quick and smooth recovery didn’t happen on its own. It took a full family effort. From the IPS and APS staff that got the students out safely, to North High School and their hospitality, to the bus drivers that delivered all remaining students straight to their doorsteps, to JE and the team on the ground with mops in hand and Reverend Walker stopping by to assist – it required a rallying effort and everyone stepped in to help. 


It’s unexpected challenges like this that show just how close this family has become. They remind us how strong we are when we come together, and we are thankful to every single person who gave their time and their care to our kids.