The little pests causing the most serious problems at Tucumcari Middle School these days aren’t students, they’re termites.
Without even registering, the wood-eaters have made themselves at home in at least two of the buildings that make up the middle school, which was built in 1970. They have been munching on wood and have even started snacking on library books, according to school officials.
Along with their destruction, however, the termites are also causing rumors to erupt, according to David Johnson, assistant superintendent of Tucumcari Schools.
School board-level discussions about what to do to eliminate the termite community have coincided with discussions about the current five-year plan for the school system, Johnson said, and the subjects have combined to fuel rumors.
The five-year plan currently under discussion may include some school consolidation in the face of declining population, Johnson said, and the termite problem at the middle school is undeniable.
It is not true, however, as has been rumored, that the Tucumcari School Board intends to demolish parts of the middle school this year and divide its students between Tucumcari Elementary School and Tucumcari High School.
School officials have not yet decided on how to get rid of the termites, but the solution may mean other nearby buildings, including the Snake Pit, the Rattler gym, may have to be wrapped to avoid becoming the next home of soon-to-be exiled termites in the middle school, Johnson said.
Currently, however, he said no solution to the termite problem has been agreed to. The five-year plan, he said, is still being formulated and is “just a plan” at this point.