Lack of air conditioning forcing Trinity elementary schools to dismiss early
Trinity Elementary Schools will be dismissing early for the remainder of the week due to the heat wave in southwest North Dakota.
None of the Dickinson Catholic Schools buildings are completely air conditioned, but the elementary students are more affected by the heat, Elementary Principal Rich Leimbach said.
"Because, obviously, the high school kids are tougher," Leimbach said.
Trinity Elementary East and Trinity Elementary West are scheduled to dismiss students at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. There are also preschool students in the elementary schools. Afternoon preschool classes have been canceled for those days.
Some rooms in the elementary schools have window units and residents have volunteered extra units to the school, Leimbach said.
"Even with the window units, you really have a difficulty cooling down," Leimbach said.
Some rooms in the high school have climate control, but there is not a central air system in the building, Leimbach said.
Students are taking several water breaks and are allowed to carry water with them, Leimbach said. They're being cycled through the air-conditioned rooms.
"It's not always hot like this but when it is, it's tough on the kids," said Leimbach, who recently moved to Dickinson from Omaha, Neb. "They just start coming home like limp rags -- they're drained."
Though Dickinson Catholic Schools is a private school system, they still need to follow the same school calendar as public schools, Leimbach said. He will have to contact the North Dakota Department of Public Instruction to see if the early dismissal will affect the school year.
This should be the only week the school dismisses early because of heat concerns, Leimbach said.
"The forecast looks for much more agreeable weather next week," Leimbach said. "In light of the forecast with the lower 90s all week long, I felt it was best."