Parent learns of school sinkhole after voicemail left by mistake

Parent learns of school sinkhole after voicemail left by mistake (Image 1)

A Metro school parent said he was notified of a sinkhole at his daughter's elementary school on Wednesday morning after a message was left on his voicemail by mistake.

Sylvan Park Elementary father Joseph Page said he received the message from the school's principal around 7:30 a.m.

In the message, Principal Evalina Cheadle is attempting to reach someone by the name of “Gus” and is heard saying, “After this rain, we've got a big sinkhole back here at our playground. Someone fell in it yesterday morning.”

The message went on saying, “I really need to get something scooped in that hole please. I've got a cone in it now. I've got cones surrounding it, but this is Sylvan Park with a big sinkhole on the playground. Thank you much.”

Nashville's News 2 visited the school on Wednesday to find the sinkhole in a drainage ravine on the playground marked by cones, however it was difficult to determine how big or deep the sinkhole was.

Principal Cheadle would not go on camera for an interview but did say she was surprised she left a message for a parent, not maintenance.

She also added that it was an adult member of the school's aftercare staff, not a student, who fell into the sinkhole.

Page, however said he believes all parents should have been notified of the potentially dangerous situation.

“I would have closed school today and surveyed the land. I mean, sinkholes, if the sinkhole is anywhere near the school ground is, the playground is, that's where parents drive through to pick their kids up. The cars could cause another sinkhole itself,” he said.

Page added, “Parents have the right to make the decision no matter how small the danger could be.”

Principal Cheadle said it was not necessary to notify parents and that the issue was taken care of quickly.

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