"The safety of our students and our staff is of the utmost importance and I just don't feel they Cleveland feels that way right now," a CMSD teacher told News 5 Monday, as the district carried on as business as usual in record-breaking heat.
There is no air conditioning in the district's buildings and all but one school in the City of Cleveland's district is open today. That school doesn't currently have power.
Parma and Elyria closed schools without air conditioning Monday and several Catholic schools jumped on board, but not Cleveland.
In Ohio, it's up to the district superintendent whether or not they stay open in severe weather.
News 5 caught up with a teacher on the phone inside one of those hot classrooms. She didn't want to share her name, but we verified she works in the district.
"They're sweating in their rooms and it's just sad...they're not learning anything. They're too hot. I walked through the halls and no classroom is doing anything. The lights are off, the fans are blasting. They have popsicles and cold water, but the kids had to pay 75 cents for a cold water," she said.
Kids, as young as 3, were in the unairconditioned buildings Monday. The CMSD teacher said some kids were getting sick. "I've seen at least 3 kids get sick today. Vomiting," she said.
News 5 took those concerns to folks with the district. They declined our interview request.
A spokesperson also denied that the 911 call for EMS to a CMSD school was heat-related like the teacher claimed.
"Why don't you leave your air-conditioned office for 10 minutes and come sit in one of our classrooms?" the teacher asked.
A CMSD spokesperson sent News 5 the following information:
Custodians arrived at our schools two hours early this morning to turn on fans and get air circulating in the building while temperatures were still in the 60's. Students and staff are being supplied with ample cold water and ice cream and staff are avoiding strenuous activity today.
"That is a bad representation of what's actually going on," said the CMSD teacher. "It's not a school. There's no learning going on. From what I understand. We are open so the students who come to school can have breakfast and lunch. We need to feed the kids. Last time I checked we were a school, supposed to educate kids."
For more information on CMSD's decision to remain open and tips sent to parents, click here.