Schools modify activities for bad air days

September 10, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
Increasing ozone levels and smoke from wildfires have prompted local air officials to declare the Valley's second Air Alert this year. It began Monday and ends on Wednesday.

The skies may be a little hazy, but these Roosevelt High School students are staying active. Recently, the air officials issued an air alert due to hot temperatures, smoke and ozone levels. So school educators are keeping a close eye on the skies and their students.

"As its getting a little more uncomfortable out there, we'll probably move inside the gym this afternoon and do an open gym type of thing, where we have different activities for them," said Mark Gradoville, PE dept. Chair

Tuesday morning though, students spent time outside, but were given water breaks and shade if they felt they needed it. He says no matter what the air quality is, they have a plan for students.

"We've renovated our girls locker room area, we now have a classroom on both sides for PE. We can take them and do cognitive things like diet checks, the importance of exercise," said Gradoville.

The air quality not only affects students enrolled in PE, but those who are practicing or preparing for a game.

"A lot of times we'll push our outdoor sports indoors where air conditioning is in the cafeteria, the gymnasium. And then there's times where cant do anything to accommodate anybody we will just have to cancel," said Larry Lopez, Roosevelt High Athletic Director.

Those adjustments mean teams can do drills or exercises indoors. School officials say during bad air quality, it's important to be flexible. "It's tough on sports but at the same time, the well being of our students is important," said Lopez.

For now, school officials say they will continue to monitor the air quality. The second air alert remains in effect through Wednesday.


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