LONG BEACH (CBSLA.com) — Kacey Bullard’s kids are in Kindergarten and second grade at Prisk Elementary and most of the classrooms don’t have air conditioning.
“My kids were sweating before they even walked into the classroom this morning,” Bullard said. It reached 84 degrees during the first day of school.
The school’s bungalows or dozen portable classrooms do have AC, but Ricardo Mack’s kids are in rooms without.
“I know it’s difficult for the kids to concentrate because of the extreme heat,” Mack said.
Sixty percent of campuses in the district are in the same situation as Prisk. Some will get AC soon, but most classrooms at Prisk will have to wait until 2025 to cool off.
“2025. Wow! That’s a long time away,” Mack said.
Long Beach Unified’s Chris Eftychiou says Prisk and two other schools are last on the list.
“It has to do with our capacity to, you know, to get so many projects up and running at the same time,” Eftychiou said. “Getting approvals from the department of state architect can take as long as a year.”
And he says the bonds voters approved to pay for the projects can’t be sold all at once. There is some relief from the heat in the meantime.
“We definitely have fans,” Eftychiou said. And the windows and doors at Prisk will be opened before kids arrive to let built up heat escape.
“We ask for people’s patience. We’re going to get to you as quickly as we can,” Eftychiou said.
“I wish there was a way that they could expedite that,” Mack said.
Stanford Middle School across the street will have AC installed in two years.
Parents can find the complete list of schools and time line by clicking here.
All 860 campuses in the Los Angeles Unified School District does have air conditioning. But about 300 classrooms reported issues with the AC.