Students hit the books as temperatures rise - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Students hit the books as temperatures rise

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Portable air conditioners brought to schools in Middletown (WFSB) Portable air conditioners brought to schools in Middletown (WFSB)
SOUTHINGTON, CT (WFSB) -

This week is full of heat and humidity as thousands of students across the state are hitting the books just a few days into a brand new school year.

Not every school district is fortunate enough to have air conditioning in all of its buildings, such as districts like Southington and Middletown.

Officials in those school districts said student health and safety is number one and the goal this time of year is keeping students as cool as possible.

Lights were turned off in classrooms and shades were drawn at Woodrow Wilson Middle School, and fans were on in full force.

"This heat is horrible, it’s horrible right now,” said Middletown parent Heather Wittier.

Middletown school officials are trying to reduce the 80 and 90 degree temperatures inside certain classrooms, as not all buildings in the district are equipped with air conditioning.

“We try to get the conditions right inside the classrooms, so the kids can learn. When there is a heat wave, it's very difficult and hard for the children to concentrate when it is hot out,” said Middletown Superintendent of Schools Patricia Charles.

School officials installed portable air conditioning units at the school on Tuesday.

Portland Electric delivered eight additional units for the hottest areas of the building.

In Southington, parents were put on notice after the superintendent of schools said he may decide to send students home early if necessary.

“Our biggest concern is the health of our youngest students. They're fragile and not the most tuned in to themselves sometimes, so can't tell us always. Little ones we have to watch the most carefully,” said Southington Superintendent of Schools Tim Connellan.

Some of the elementary schools, like Derynoski Elementary School, don’t have central air, so early dismissal across the board may happen later in the week. The middle and high schools do have air conditioning but would be let out early as well.

Connellan said he will continue to watch the temperatures later in the week before making the call. If he does decide to have an early dismissal, he will know by 10 a.m. and pass it along to parents so they can plan accordingly.

Temperatures are expected to reach 90 degrees on Wednesday and Thursday and the humidity is also expected to rise. Stay with Eyewitness News on air and online for the latest.

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