PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Students at a West Oak Lane high school are getting ready to transition to another building nearly six miles away after an inspector found asbestos in their school last week.
The School District of Philadelphia says it shut down Building 21 last Wednesday after an inspector found asbestos to be exposed in the auditorium and stairways during a routine check.
Starting Monday, students will temporarily transition to Strawberry Mansion High School.
"My God, pray for the kids," said Clinton Jones, who graduated from the school in 2002. His mom still lives across the street.
SEE ALSO: Asbestos found at high school in Philadelphia's West Oak Lane neighborhood
"First of all, they need to fix all these old schools and reopen all the old schools that were shut down so the kids can have better schools and better environments," he said.
"I was shocked," said Shersa Brown, who also lives nearby and is a parent of young kids.
She says she found out about the problem with her neighborhood school on the news.
"They could have at least got in contact with the surrounding areas because I literally face the school every day. They could have done anything else," she said.
Building 21, which was built in 1915, now joins a list of more than 2,200 asbestos abatement projects in the Philadelphia School District.
Exposed asbestos is a health risk and the minerals can cause cancer.
The Philadelphia Federation of Teachers says old buildings like Building 21 have been neglected and the district needs to invest more money in caring for them.
Caring for old facilities is part of Superintendent Tony Watlington's transition plan.
Meanwhile, workers were outside of Building 21 loading trucks Sunday morning with gear to be taken to Strawberry Mansion High School.
"That's a trip for them and I know the neighborhood's a little different also," said Natasha Quarterman, who lives in West Oak Lane.
The district says it picked Strawberry Mansion High because it has unused classroom space in a separate area of the building and they will be able to keep Building 21 students together there.
Students were invited to an open house at the school Sunday afternoon to tour the building and pick up SEPTA passes.