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Updated 09/01/11 – 5:58 a.m.
NAPERVILLE, Ill. (CBS) – All but two of the elementary schools in Naperville’s Indian Prairie School District 204 will be closed on Friday due to concerns about excessive heat.
LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Steve Miller reports
As a result of the high temperatures in the forecast, Indian Priaire District 204 has decided to cancel classes at 19 elementary schools that do not have air conditioning. The move affects approximately 11,000 students.
The remaining two elementary schools — Owen and Peterson schools — are air conditioned and will remain open. The district’s seven middle schools and five high schools are also operating as normal on Friday.
In a statement, district officials said, “having excessive temperatures for multiple days with little relief at night will not allow our buildings to sufficiently cool down in time to handle tomorrow’s expected high temperatures.”
The YMCA’s Safe n’ Sound program in those schools has also been canceled for Friday.
With temperatures already reaching 90 degrees by early Thursday afternoon, schools in District 204 were taking precautions to keep students comfortable by rotating students through air-conditioned areas, moving all upstairs classes downstairs, taking frequent water breaks and moving classes outside when appropriate.
Thursday afternoon, parents and students applauded the decision to cancel classes on Friday at the 19 schools without air conditioning.
“I think it’s an excellent decision. I actually was thinking of calling the school today and just telling them earlier, like, you know, ‘Can you make it a half a day?’ because it was just so hot and you can’t learn in that type of environment,” said Naperville mother Melissa Martinez.
“I think it’s great because my granddaughter came home yesterday and she was bawling. I mean, you know, her hair was all sweaty,” said Aurora resident Dolores Jones.
“We went downstairs after lunch so we could be, like, a little bit cooler,” said student Eva Barajas.
The district was also making arrangements for parents in need of child care. The YMCA on Schoger Road was offering a supervised program from 7 a.m. until 5 p.m. Friday for a $39 fee. Pre-registration is not necessary.
For a complete list of the schools, click here.