EDISON - Demolition work is underway at the James Monroe Elementary School, a little more than a month after a fire destroyed the building.

Heavy equipment and construction workers started work on the building on Sharpe Road yesterday.

Officials say crews should have the 50-year-old building demolished in about five weeks. Crews will reportedly work between 8 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday since the school is in a residential neighborhood. 

A new school is expected to be built on the site next year.

The school was destroyed by a multi-alarm fire on March 22. Jerome Higgins, the school’s head custodian, has been charged with improperly discarding a cigarette in a school trash can. He's been placed on administrative leave.

For extended footage of the demolition, watch the clip to the left or go to News 12 Extra on Optimum TV channel 612.