A fire late Friday afternoon at Bret Hart Elementary School in south Modesto destroyed a wing of three classrooms and a computer lab.
The call for a structure fire at the school on Glenn Avenue came in at 3:51 p.m, said Modesto Fire Division Chief Michael Lillie. When firefighters arrived they found the north wing of the school fully involved, with the fire spreading toward the west wing.
Crews from Modesto and Ceres fire departments battled the blaze for about 40 minutes until it was under control. The fire appears to have started in the 50s wing of the school, which includes classrooms 50 to 54, Lillie said. Three classrooms and a computer lab were destroyed by the blaze. The 40s wing of the school, where the fire was heading, suffered heat damage.
The cause of the fire is under investigation and no estimate on damages was available Friday, Lillie said.
The school is out for winter break and gates to the school were locked when firefighters arrived. Crews had to cut the lock to a gate to get to the fire.
Students are scheduled to return to class Jan. 15. Bret Harte has 1,015 students enrolled in kindergarten through sixth grades.
School employees who were on campus while crews were battling the blaze declined to comment and no one else could be reached for comment about whether school would resume as scheduled.