School Fire Looks Like Arson

MEDINA, Ohio (AP) - A fire that caused an estimated $500,000 damage to an elementary school appears to be arson, fire officials said.

The fire destroyed at least one of Ella Canavan Elementary School's 30 classrooms and damaged many others.

There were no suspects in the fire that started at about 5 a.m. Sunday, Medina Fire Chief Bill Herthneck said. Most of the school had smoke and heat damage.

"For right now, all I can say is it's very suspicious and still under investigation," Herthneck said.

Two or more classrooms might not be available when about 740 first- though fifth-graders show up for school Sept. 3, said Thomas Lehrer, assistant superintendent of the Medina City School District.

Two unused temporary classrooms at the school will go into service, and trailers can be set up on the grounds if necessary, he said.

Medina is about 25 miles south of Cleveland.

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