Back to school and trying to keep cool

The bell ran for the start of school at Eliot Arts Magnet Academy in Alta Dena and along with the curriculum for class, students are also getting a lesson on how to handle the heat. 

“This is August, Southern California, Alta Dena so it is a little warmer than normal, but we are well trained in terms of handling warm conditions at school,” Principal Lori Touloumian, Eliot Arts Magnet Academy, said. 

Toulumian has made it a priority to make sure kids are comfortable in class on a day when temperatures outside were expected to reach 100 degrees. 

She instructed teachers to close the blinds and switch off the lights to conserve energy. 

“It does sometimes take awhile to have that AC just kind of trickle to every classroom, she said. 

The district knows keeping school cool in these historic buildings is a challenge. 

Some of the AC units installed years ago weren’t built to work under these conditions. 

“There are bound to be a few glitches so we are keeping crews out and busy to make sure those are repaired as soon as possible,” Hilda Ramirez Horveth, Pasadena Unified School District, said. 

The district is also giving free water bottles to any thirsty students and they’re reminded to keep drinking, even while concentrating. 

The school did its part and so did the parents, dressing kids for the heat. 

“No sweaters or dark colors and you put lots of water in their backpacks,” mom, Imar Silva, said. 

Pasadena Unified School District reported no outages on the first day, but LAUSD is still working to correct air conditioning issues before Tuesday’s school start. 

Right now 24 schools with 4 or more classrooms don’t have A/C. 

The district said technicians are working around the clock to restore the cool air. 

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