Eleven of the 12 Dorian hurricane shelters were Duval County schools.

Eleven of Jacksonville's 12 Hurricane Dorian shelters were Duval County schools — a fact School Board members have warned City Council members about for months.

In the process of campaigning for a half-cent sales tax referendum, one of the district's cases is that the maintenance dollars the tax would raise go to schools that don't just serve public school students, but the general public as a whole when emergency strikes. This week, that played out.

Schools throughout Jacksonville — including Arlington Middle School, Oceanway Elementary School and Mandarin Middle School — acted as shelters for hundreds of evacuees from Monday through Thursday at noon.

"All of our shelters held up remarkably well," Duval County Public Schools Superintendent Diana Greene said.

According to Jacksonville Ready, 646 people stayed in shelters. Records show more than half of those people, about 450, stayed at schools. 

Because of that, public school students got an extra day off, giving the district time to clean and examine damage before resuming school Friday.

"District/school staff and maintenance teams are currently deep-cleaning and sanitizing schools, and assessing the building and grounds for damage," spokeswoman Sonya Duke-Bolden said in an email. "Maintenance issues that have been reported at this time include downed trees/large tree limbs, a leak in one classroom and a leak in a stairwell."

When schools serve as shelters, faculty and staff members are usually on hand.

Did you know each@DuvalSchools shelter is staffed at a minimum with 2 administrators, 2 School Police officers, a maintenance employee, a custodian, and an IT support team member. Thanks for supporting our communities#TeamDuval! Stay safe everyone

— Elizabeth Andersen (@andersen4dcps)September 4, 2019

According to Duke-Bolden, there's typically an administrator, two to three maintenance staff members and two or three custodians at each shelter.

"The school district works in collaboration with City of Jacksonville for shelter operations," she said. "Costs incurred by the school district are submitted for reimbursement to the City of Jacksonville."

Greene said during Dorian, each school had maintenance teams, custodial support and IT support stationed at each school that served as a shelter.

"We will return our attention to our normal way to serve our community," Greene said. "We will be packing up cots and other shelter supplies, cleaning up and ensuring everything is in place to open."

Throughout Jacksonville, 29 of 31 listed shelters are schools.

Emily Bloch: (904) 359-4083