Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
Students Hot and Parent Bothered Over Lack of AC on FUSD Buses
gvw_nancy_price
By Nancy Price, Multimedia Journalist
Published 5 years ago on
August 28, 2019

Share

Brandi Alexander’s 10-year-old son normally doesn’t mind the long school bus ride to Yokomi Elementary, where he is a GATE student. But when the summer temperatures are in the triple digits, those rides are nearly unbearable, Alexander says.
When he gets home, “he’s just beet red,” Alexander told GV Wire. “This year it’s been so hot.”
On steamy days, the driver greets her son and other passengers with ” ‘Hey kids, welcome to the hot bus,’ so they know what to expect,” she said. “I feel for the bus driver. They’re in there too.”
Alexander said her son has even asked her for a ride home a couple of times so he wouldn’t have to take the bus from Yokomi in central Fresno to his Fig Garden Loop neighborhood, which can take 60 to 90 minutes. He’s the first student on in the morning and last off in the afternoon. She makes sure to have a cold drink waiting for him when he gets home.
Last year was no problem because his bus was air-conditioned, Alexander said. But this year the Alexanders discovered that air conditioning is not the rule for Fresno Unified buses.

Fewer Than Half Equipped With AC

Alexander said that when she checked with the Fresno Unified transportation department, she was told that only 10 buses had working air-conditioning systems. The district’s website says that 44 of the 103 buses have air conditioning. Eighty-two are fueled with compressed natural gas, and most are equipped with Wi-Fi.
But district spokeswoman Vanessa Ramirez said only two of those 44 buses have broken air conditioners, and they are not in service.
The district is in the process of buying three new buses with air-conditioning, using grant money. All buses purchased since 2013 have been equipped with air conditioning, she said.
Retrofitting the older buses in the fleet with air conditioning would cost up to $25,000 per bus, take months to complete, and require approval by the California Highway Patrol, Ramirez said, which is “not an option for FUSD.”
Alexander said she worries not only for her son but for other kids who have health issues such as asthma or who take medications that make them more sensitive to high temperatures.
So far this year, there have been no reports of heat-related incidents on a Fresno Unified bus, Ramirez said.

Schools Moving Forward With AC Projects

Once students are in school, air conditioning is readily available in all regular classrooms, Ramirez said. Some locker rooms or vocational education spaces were originally equipped with evaporative cooling because it was not possible to condition air where there was extreme humidity, gases, or smoke, she said.
At schools where those spaces have been converted to classrooms, air conditioning is contingent on evaluation of the buildings for conversion, Ramirez said.
Meanwhile, Measure X bond funds are helping to pay for air conditioning projects totaling $11 million, including 22 school cafeterias that have had evaporative cooling, she said.  Those projects are either already completed, underway, or in design, Ramirez said.
The Fresno High gym air conditioning project is nearing completion, and the Hoover Event Center AC project is in design, she said.

DON'T MISS

Ukraine Uses Long-Range Missiles Secretly Provided by US to Hit Russian-Held Areas, Officials Say

DON'T MISS

Upward Bound: Edison High’s Garcia Headed to Johns Hopkins

DON'T MISS

Boxing Star Ryan Garcia Wants to Meet Netanyahu, Pledges Aid for Gaza Children

DON'T MISS

Fong Won’t Debate Boudreaux, but We Get Hot Topic Answers Anyway

DON'T MISS

Legislation Pandering to Tribal Casinos Is a Bad Bet for Fresno Cardroom Employees

DON'T MISS

About 1 in 4 US Adults Over 50 Say They Expect to Never Retire, an AARP Study Finds

DON'T MISS

Biden Signs a $95 Billion War Aid Measure With Assistance for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan

DON'T MISS

Ancestry Website to Catalogue Names of Japanese Americans Incarcerated During World War II

DON'T MISS

First-Round Picks Could Be on the Trading Block on Day 1 of the NFL Draft

DON'T MISS

Trojans Rejoice! Reggie Bush Is Reinstated as 2005 Heisman Trophy Winner

UP NEXT

Ancestry Website to Catalogue Names of Japanese Americans Incarcerated During World War II

UP NEXT

Google Fires More Workers Who Protested Its Deal With Israel

UP NEXT

What Do Supreme Court Justices Say About Homelessness?

UP NEXT

Oprah Winfrey and Dwayne Johnson Pledged $10M for Maui Wildfire Survivors. They Gave Much More.

UP NEXT

Did Fresno Unified’s Biggest Contractor Not Pay Its Workers? Company Still Gets Millions After Civil Penalty

UP NEXT

Fresno Unified Says It Has No Superintendent Succession Plan Despite HR Leader’s Claim

UP NEXT

Trustees to Vote on New Fresno High Gym, Bullard Security Fence. Who Were the Low Bidders?

UP NEXT

15 People Injured When Tram Collides With Guardrail at Universal Studios Theme Park

UP NEXT

The Pickle Flavor Frenzy and Its Rise in Food Trends

UP NEXT

Long-Lost First Model of USS Enterprise from ‘Star Trek’ Boldly Goes Home

Nancy Price,
Multimedia Journalist
Nancy Price is a multimedia journalist for GV Wire. A longtime reporter and editor who has worked for newspapers in California, Florida, Alaska, Illinois and Kansas, Nancy joined GV Wire in July 2019. She previously worked as an assistant metro editor for 13 years at The Fresno Bee. Nancy earned her bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. Her hobbies include singing with the Fresno Master Chorale and volunteering with Fresno Filmworks. You can reach Nancy at 559-492-4087 or Send an Email

Fong Won’t Debate Boudreaux, but We Get Hot Topic Answers Anyway

2 hours ago

Legislation Pandering to Tribal Casinos Is a Bad Bet for Fresno Cardroom Employees

3 hours ago

About 1 in 4 US Adults Over 50 Say They Expect to Never Retire, an AARP Study Finds

3 hours ago

Biden Signs a $95 Billion War Aid Measure With Assistance for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan

4 hours ago

Ancestry Website to Catalogue Names of Japanese Americans Incarcerated During World War II

4 hours ago

First-Round Picks Could Be on the Trading Block on Day 1 of the NFL Draft

5 hours ago

Trojans Rejoice! Reggie Bush Is Reinstated as 2005 Heisman Trophy Winner

5 hours ago

Arizona Just Revived an 1864 Law Criminalizing Abortion. Here’s What’s Happening in Other States

5 hours ago

Airlines Now Required to Give Automatic Cash Refunds for Canceled, Delayed Flights

5 hours ago

Fresno County Appoints New Librarian. What’s Her Favorite Book Genre?

6 hours ago

Ukraine Uses Long-Range Missiles Secretly Provided by US to Hit Russian-Held Areas, Officials Say

WASHINGTON — Ukraine for the first time has begun using long-range ballistic missiles, bombing a Russian military airfield in Crimea last we...

22 mins ago

22 mins ago

Ukraine Uses Long-Range Missiles Secretly Provided by US to Hit Russian-Held Areas, Officials Say

Local Education /
2 hours ago

Upward Bound: Edison High’s Garcia Headed to Johns Hopkins

2 hours ago

Boxing Star Ryan Garcia Wants to Meet Netanyahu, Pledges Aid for Gaza Children

2 hours ago

Fong Won’t Debate Boudreaux, but We Get Hot Topic Answers Anyway

3 hours ago

Legislation Pandering to Tribal Casinos Is a Bad Bet for Fresno Cardroom Employees

3 hours ago

About 1 in 4 US Adults Over 50 Say They Expect to Never Retire, an AARP Study Finds

4 hours ago

Biden Signs a $95 Billion War Aid Measure With Assistance for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan

4 hours ago

Ancestry Website to Catalogue Names of Japanese Americans Incarcerated During World War II

MENU

CONNECT WITH US

Search

Send this to a friend