17 August 2004
Geez, it's hot in here
Well, it's not, actually, but were I attending one of the local schools, I'd probably be saying something like that towards the middle of the day. In an effort to get everyone off the premises by Memorial Day, school districts had been starting classes as early as the second week of August.
Then in 2002, Tulsa Public Schools, the state's largest district, moved their start date to early September; they've since realized some $380,000 in savings simply from not having the air conditioning cranked up to August levels for two weeks.
Oklahoma City Public Schools followed suit last year, saving about $125,000, and will start classes this year on the 30th of August. (Suburban districts are on their own schedules; Norman starts on the 25th, Putnam City the 26th, Edmond the 23rd.)
Three schools in the Oklahoma City district are on a year-round schedule: Horace Mann, Sequoyah, and Westwood. They started classes 22 July; after each of the first three nine-week sessions, there's a three-week break, and after the fourth, a seven-week summer break. How this affects utility costs, I don't know; the district says the reduced downtime in the summer has brought about some academic improvement.