With spring temperatures rising to summer levels over the last week, Cheshire schools are feeling the heat.
As such, the decision was made to schedule an early dismissal for Monday, June 7, in order to keep students and faculty as safe from the 90-plus degree temperatures expected.
“The combination of extremely high temperatures and mask wearing will create unsafe conditions for our students and staff in most school buildings tomorrow,” wrote Superintendent of Schools Jeff Solan, in a email home to families on Sunday, June 6. Solan stated that the only school that will remain open for normal instructional hours will be Highland School.
“Even with the early dismissal, we are encouraging students to bring water bottles and dress for the conditions,” he continued.
Solan alerted the Board of Education last Thursday, June 3, during his Superintendent’s Report that he might need to shorten some school days and lessen the mask mandate for CPS students this week due to expected heat and weather conditions.
“While there is a mask mandate for everyone, students and staff, to wear a mask while they are in the building. We are lifting the mandate for students to wear them outside for this week,” Solan explained. “I am concerned about the health and safety of our students and staff, the forecast is really insane next week.”
The weather for Monday is forecasted to be around 90 degrees with humidity reaching over 50 percent in some parts of Connecticut. That heat wave is predicted to carry through until later in the week,
Solan explained that the current school buildings tend to heat up quickly, which might cause early dismissals throughout the week due to extreme heat.
“The air conditioned buildings, which excludes everything but Highland, may have to be dismissed early…I hate to do that, but we don't want to risk the health and safety of our little ones with masks etc.”
During the same meeting, Solan outlined how the District is in the process of collecting ChromeBooks from students in order to service them over the summer break. Because the Chromebooks need to be returned to the District, remote learning will not be an option for most during this week.
“We have to inventory and service thousands of ChromeBooks in preparation for next year, so the possibility of us using remote instruction during that time is dramatically reduced,” he said. “Depending on the day and time...it might just be like a regular, old school early dismissal.”
This is the last full week of instruction in Cheshire. Schools let out for summer break beginning Wednesday, June 16. A graduation ceremony for Cheshire High School seniors will be held at 6 p.m. that day on the field behind CHS, weather permitting.