ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) – School is back to normal at Ernie Davis Academy after a small fire in a bathroom that school officials said was put out within minutes.

Ernie Davis Academy Principal Colin Werfelman sent a letter to parents on January 31, 2023 saying that around 11:45 a.m., administration responded to a report of smoke coming from the boys bathroom off of the cafeteria.

The letter said custodians, admin, and the school resource officer “responded within seconds” and found a paper towel dispenser on fire. The fire was immediately extinguished, Werfelman said.

However, because of the fire, the letter said the school was put into a hold in place and the cafeteria was evacuated until the Elmira Fire Department (which reportedly arrived around 11:50 a.m.) determined it was safe to move students. Students then ate in classrooms for the rest of the day, out of “an abundance of caution”, according to the letter.

Officials are investigating the incident. Werfelman asked that any students, staff, or parents with information or questions about the incident contact Ernie David Administration.