Hot temperatures, faulty AC prompt early dismissals at two city charter schools

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Monarch Academy in Northeast Baltimore. Photo by Eli Pousson, via Flickr.

It’s school-infrastructure-vulnerability season once again, when extreme temperatures and shaky HVAC equipment leave schools vulnerable to closure and send the kids home early.

Today brought early dismissals for the roughly 540 middle and high schoolers at the Baltimore Leadership School for Young Women in Mount Vernon, as well as nearly 1,000 elementary and middle schoolers at the soon-to-be-shuttered Monarch Academy in Northeast Baltimore.

Baltimore City Public Schools attributed both charter schools’ early dismissals to air conditioning issues. A pop-up notice on the Baltimore Leadership School for Young Women’s website also mentioned “extreme temperatures in the building.”

Charter schools that own their buildings are responsible for facility maintenance.

At the time of the announcement, temps were hovering in the upper 80s. The rest of the week is due to be milder, with highs in the mid-70s and low 80s through Friday.

The closures come as students have exactly one month left in the academic year. This period is book-ending a school year that began with six dozen schools shutting down early due to steamy temperatures and a lack of serviceable air conditioning for proper learning.

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Ethan McLeod

Senior Editor at Baltimore Fishbowl
Ethan has been editing and reporting for Baltimore Fishbowl since fall of 2016. His previous stops include Fox 45, CQ Researcher and Connection Newspapers in Virginia. His freelance writing has been featured in CityLab, Slate, Baltimore City Paper, DCist and elsewhere.
Ethan McLeod
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