'The Miracle in Chillicothe': Back to School for St. Edward Students

After months of work, it's finally the first day of school

CHILLICOTHE, Ill. - The first day of school comes in January for some students in Chillicothe. St. Edward School was at risk of being closed for good, but with a few months worth of repairs and the support of a community, class is back in session.

"I actually couldn't sleep last night you know you always get really excited on your first day of school and it was the first day of school all over again." Teacher, Michelle Kluge, said.

A new roof, new ceiling, and some new paint, on Monday morning, class was back in session at St. Edward. Students and staff could hardly hide their excitement.

"We keep calling it the miracle in Chillicothe." St. Edward Principal, Mike Domico, said.

When summer break rolled around, the school learned it was at risk of being shut down, that was unless it could clean up a leaky roof and asbestos in the nearly 60-year-old building. But, it came with a price tag and a deadline: raise $400,000 in one week.

"Had we not made the money then the school would've closed." Domico said.

But, that didn't happen, because the community backed the school, raising the money in just 4 days.

“People wanted us to be here. People wanted us to stay. God has great plans for us” Kluge said.

"We saw the community kind of come together for this small school." 8th grader, Luke Auge, said.

As the work got underway, students spent the first half of the year at Chillicothe Bible Church.

"I teach science I'm used to my lab where I have lots of equipment and I could only take a few things over to that bible church so I have lots of experiments and things that we haven't done that we're excited to do." Teacher, Becky Shimp, said.

Now, they can, saying they never lost faith in the "miracle in Chillicothe" at Saint Edward School.

"It's just unbelievable and the people in this parish, in this school, and in the town are incredible." Domico said.

The community is welcome to come see the improvements when they bless and dedicate the school this Sunday.

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