By Will Amari
What lurks in the dark recesses of Science Leadership Academy? Students often walk right by the basement, completely unaware of its existence. The fact is SLA has an underworld and its left us guessing. What’s down there? Why all the secrecy? The answer may surprise you.
The stairs that lead down to the SLA basement are near the elevators facing the Arch Street side of the building. The light is dim and the stairs are blocked off by a bold, bright red sign clearly stating, “Not an exit.”
Most students however, are unaware of it even though they pass by it numerous times a day on their way to class.
“It’s (the basement) not really talked about,” says Junior Nikki Adeli. “Not unless it comes up in conversation. It’s like an SLA mystery!”
Adeli has been attending SLA for three years and she said that she hadn’t heard of a basement until she was interviewed about it. When asked what was down there, she believed that it was just another dark room cluttered with old clocks that are no longer in use.
Other students, such as Junior Melanie Harrington believed the basement was filled with, “dust and junk we don’t use.”
The students at SLA appeared to be on the right track but no one was absolutely positive. Only Program Coordinator Jeremy Spry seemed to know the answer. He described it perfectly saying, “It’s dark and damp and scary down there. It’s not a fun place to be.”
According to Mr. Spry, SLA used to have full access to the basement but when the fourth floor apartments were built SLA lost access. “It is part of the lease,” explained Mr. Spry. “I do know it’s absolutely terrifying. We stored paint and other cleaning supplies. It is also where the freight elevator lives.”
The SLA basement may not be as ghostly as we want it to be and most students won’t be surprised by Mr. Spry’s answers. However, it will remain one of the creepier areas of SLA. It is safe to say that except for its mystery the basement has no appeal.
SLA has lost both the right to access it and the desire to use it. Who can blame the teachers for blocking it off? If it’s a dungeon filled with rats and junk, then the apartments and their residents can have it.
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