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Woodson Junior High Back on Full-Day Schedule Starting Wednesday

Jan. 4, 2008 — Half days at John H. Woodson Junior High School have ended for now: Starting Wednesday, students, faculty and staff members are being asked to return to the St. Croix campus at 7:45 a.m. for a full day of classes, which will end at 3 p.m.
Woodson's heating and ventilation problems have served as the impetus for two teacher walkouts: one at the beginning of the school year and another two months ago, which ultimately prompted a meeting between the territory's Education commissioner and school officials. Though multiple window-ventilation fans were installed in a majority of the classrooms without air conditioning, complaints about the heat remained, forcing Education officials to implement a half-day schedule, with students going home at 1 p.m. (See "New Fans Fail to Tame Heat at Woodson School.")
"The administration has indicated that they're moving forward with ordering the manufactured air-conditioning units and going about the prerequisites of getting bids and getting the electrical work in order to accommodate the AC units," said Tyrone Molyneaux, American Federation of Teachers president on St. Croix. "They expect that by the end of January they should have the units on island and expect to have them installed in February."
Overheating in the classrooms is no longer an immediate concern, he added when contacted Sunday.
"We're at that point in the year where the days are shorter and cooler, so there's not so much intense heat in the classrooms as we had in the beginning of the school year," Molyneaux said. "We're still having problems with ventilation, but we have been waiting to get back on regular schedule so we can continue to meet the students' needs. So we implore the administration to move as fast as they can, especially since the weather will start changing again in May or June. We have given them the benefit of the doubt, since they have indicated they are working to solve the problem, so we hope that this will soon be fixed once and for all."
Education officials will also hold a series of follow-up meetings with Woodson's faculty, staff, students and parents to discuss plans for the rest of the school year, according to an Education Department news release.
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Jan. 4, 2008 -- Half days at John H. Woodson Junior High School have ended for now: Starting Wednesday, students, faculty and staff members are being asked to return to the St. Croix campus at 7:45 a.m. for a full day of classes, which will end at 3 p.m.
Woodson's heating and ventilation problems have served as the impetus for two teacher walkouts: one at the beginning of the school year and another two months ago, which ultimately prompted a meeting between the territory's Education commissioner and school officials. Though multiple window-ventilation fans were installed in a majority of the classrooms without air conditioning, complaints about the heat remained, forcing Education officials to implement a half-day schedule, with students going home at 1 p.m. (See "New Fans Fail to Tame Heat at Woodson School.")
"The administration has indicated that they're moving forward with ordering the manufactured air-conditioning units and going about the prerequisites of getting bids and getting the electrical work in order to accommodate the AC units," said Tyrone Molyneaux, American Federation of Teachers president on St. Croix. "They expect that by the end of January they should have the units on island and expect to have them installed in February."
Overheating in the classrooms is no longer an immediate concern, he added when contacted Sunday.
"We're at that point in the year where the days are shorter and cooler, so there's not so much intense heat in the classrooms as we had in the beginning of the school year," Molyneaux said. "We're still having problems with ventilation, but we have been waiting to get back on regular schedule so we can continue to meet the students' needs. So we implore the administration to move as fast as they can, especially since the weather will start changing again in May or June. We have given them the benefit of the doubt, since they have indicated they are working to solve the problem, so we hope that this will soon be fixed once and for all."
Education officials will also hold a series of follow-up meetings with Woodson's faculty, staff, students and parents to discuss plans for the rest of the school year, according to an Education Department news release.
Back Talk Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.