DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – A combination of bad luck and delayed repairs has Dallas ISD leaders scrambling to keep students cool after A/C units failed at two separate campuses.
“It was really cool when I was outside; but, inside, it was very hot,” said Alex Perez, a student at Eladio R. Martinez Learning Center in West Dallas. “I’m not lying, it was very hot in there. Very hot.”
According to DISD staffers, a power outage in the neighborhood led to a power surge when the system came back on line and that blew out a transformer that supports the A/C units.
At one point, DISD staged buses nearby in preparation for moving students if the repairs couldn’t be made quickly.
The A/C was back on by about 11:00, but that wasn’t quick enough for some parents who had been notified through an automated recording about the problems.
“They already had the A/C fixed,” shared parent Angela Perez. “But, it still felt hot. So, that’s why I just took him out, either way, to make sure it’s working.”
The A/C issues at Martinez come on the heels of reports of hot classrooms at Francisco “Pancho” Medrano Middle School in North Dallas.
“It’s something that we’ve worked to resolve since over the summertime,” said DISD Spokesperson Robyn Harris. “Unfortunately, it’s been a domino effect of some issues that we weren’t able to get resolved before the start of school.”
According to Harris, crews worked throughout the weekend to install a temporary cooling system at Medrano, bringing cool air to most, but not all of the school.
“We’re shifting classrooms… for those who may not have it in their particular room, they’re shifting them to other areas of the building so they can be most comfortable.”
The district also apologized for not communicating with parents better prior to the start of the school year about the anticipated challenges.
“This is certainly not ideal, said Harris of the plan to shift classrooms when needed. “We want to make sure that we are able to continue supporting them in the learning environment that they deserve.”