Steiner Elementary delays start by one week

By Karl Terry: PNT Managing Editor

First-graders at Steiner Elementary School got a week’s reprieve from hitting the books as classes will be delayed for a week due to roofing work, according to a press release from Portales Municipal Schools.

Instead of beginning classes today as planned, Steiner will start Monday, according to the release.

“Right now we have half of our building without air conditioning,” Steiner Principal Becky Flen said. “With the weather as hot as it’s been that’s just not workable. We’re having to not have school because of that reason.”

Flen said temperatures in some of the classrooms were as high as 92 degrees Monday.

Superintendent Randy Fowler said HVAC units that were purchased for Steiner were determined to be the wrong type unit after they were placed on the roof Friday. He said the delay will allow crews to get the right units installed before classes start.

“We just don’t want our students or our teachers in those kind of conditions,” he said of the heat. “It’s just not safe.”

In the meantime, teachers will be utilizing the delay to start student assessments which will be done by appointment, said Flen. She said that way the school time won’t be lost. Teachers will be able to do the main task they had planned for this week anyway.

“It will kind of be good in a way for the student, because they will one-on-one with their teacher during the assessments,” Flen said.

Flen said the first-grade schedule was set up with extra time built into it, so the delay will not have to be made up.

Flen said most of the parents had been informed when they came to open house Monday. She said only one or two families from each classroom didn’t attend, and teachers were calling those parents.

Flen said teachers will be in the building all week and will be on bus duty for students that transfer at Steiner on their bus schedule.