COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Thousands of students will head home from school earlier than usual Tuesday due to the hot temperatures.
Columbus City Schools plans to dismiss high school and middle school students beginning at noon, while elementary, K-6 and K-8 schools will dismiss at 1 p.m. The afternoon bus schedule will run about 2.5 hours earlier than usual.
- All high school and middle school students will be dismissed starting at Noon.
- Students in elementary, K-6, and K-8 schools will be dismissed starting at 1:00 pm.
- All students will be served lunch before they are dismissed.
- Afternoon buses will run approximately 2.5 hours earlier. Families need to make alternative plans to meet children at the bus stop early or arrange for early pick-up at the school.
- After-school sports and extra-curricular activities are canceled for Tuesday afternoon.
- Latchkey will still be open and ready to welcome students at 1:00 p.m.
- Teachers and staff will remain at the buildings until the end of the regular day. Faculty and staff will be able to work in the limited cool/air-conditioned spaces. Teachers will also assist in supervising any students who cannot be transported home early.
At Fairwood Elementary School, which has about 310 students in pre-K through 6th grade, and across the district, bottled water was on hand to keep students hydrated. Custodians came in early to open windows and turn on fans to circulate cooler air into classrooms.
Dr. John Stanford, interim superintendent for CCS, said about 30 of the district’s buildings have no air conditioning at all, while many others have some, but not enough for the whole building.
“In most of our buildings, we have air-conditioned rooms,” Stanford said. “And so principals can work with their teachers to circulate students in and out of those air-conditioned rooms during the day to try to manage the heat throughout the day.”
Stanford thanked the City of Columbus Recreation and Parks Department for opening rec centers early to accept students who would be dismissed early.
All extracurricular activities and after-school sports are canceled for Tuesday afternoon, but the district said the Latchkey program would be open and ready to accept students at 1 p.m.