Teacher starts fundraiser to battle extreme heat inside some Flint schools

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FLINT (WJRT) - (08/14/19) - An earlier start to the school year for Flint Community Schools means a shorter summer break and more days inside classrooms without air conditioning.

Lacking air conditioning in most buildings, temperatures soared in some classrooms this week.

"On Monday her classroom got up to 97 degrees. Today, currently she's sitting in 93 degree heat," said Jason Eaton, who is a teacher in another district speaking of a friend who teaches in Flint.

Eaton was so upset by the extreme heat readings that he started a campaign online and it's picking up steam.

"[The teacher was] telling me her students were vomiting and having all types of trouble with the heat -- and that's with the windows open," Eaton said.

Other parents and teachers, who wished to remain anonymous, also spoke about unbearable heat inside some Flint Community Schools classrooms.

"When I heard this, I just felt like this was totally unacceptable. I'm a teacher myself. I can't imagine having that type of teaching condition and learning condition," Eaton said.

Eaton said a thermometer reached upwards of 90 degrees inside of a Flint classroom Wednesday afternoon.

One parent said her daughter's classroom had been "over 90 degrees this whole week." She calls it "completely unacceptable and inhumane."

But about a month ago, a few weeks before class started, teachers expressed these same concerns about the new school calendar, which meant starting class in early August -- much earlier than normal.

At the time, Superintendent Derrick Lopez acknowledged heat inside classrooms could be an issue with the August classes and was something he would monitor.

"Some of the buildings are going to be in better shape than others because of the controls were placed into the buildings. Others will have to wait until next year because we had a condensed summer," Lopez said.

RELATED: Flint teachers concerned about August classes with no air conditioning

Until that happens, Eaton is raising money through a Facebook fundraiser to buy air conditioning units for individual classrooms.

"I already have an anonymous donor that's going to take care of the one classroom, but it's still going and people are still interested, which is great," Eaton said.

Lopez was asked about the concerns brought forward by teachers and parents Wednesday.

“When issues pertaining to building conditions are brought to the district's attention, they are dealt with swiftly. We encourage any parents with questions or concerns to contact the district directly," Lopez said.

Anyone who wants to donate to the fundraiser for air conditioning units should visit this
link.



 
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