MMSD: Too early to say how many students missed class Thursday due to heat

MADISON, Wis. — Students and teachers in schools without air conditioning are again dealing with warm classrooms Thursday as temperatures hit new records in Madison.

On Wednesday, News 3 Now spoke with multiple teachers and parents of students at Franklin Elementary School who voiced concerns about classroom temperatures reaching the upper 80s, distracting students from learning.

The Madison Metropolitan School District outlined numerous steps it’s taking to keep students cool, ranging from rotating students through air-conditioned portions of schools to adding scheduled hydration breaks and providing fans.

RELATED: Too hot to teach? Madison teachers say lack of air conditioning affecting student learning

MMSD spokesperson Tim LeMonds told News 3 Now Thursday morning the district was not immediately able to calculate how many students may have been absent Thursday due to the heat.

“Normally, these numbers are not available until the next day and even this can be challenging in such a short timeline,” he wrote in an email. “Daily, there are hundreds of absences each day across the district for a wide array of reasons. In addition, to pull absences connected only to heat related issues would provide further complexity.”

News 3 Now’s cameras were not able to go into schools to record video of the district’s heat mitigation efforts, with LeMonds saying the request would be “extremely hard to coordinate on short notice” due to parental consent requirements and necessary approvals from school leadership.

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