Hot start for a few Fresno Unified schools

FRESNO, California

Teachers at Birney Elementary school in central Fresno opened their doors and windows trying to get a cross breeze blowing in their classrooms Wednesday. It was the third straight day without air-conditioning. The district discovered a problem in the cooling system computer Monday afternoon.

Karin Temple Associate Superintendent for Fresno Unified said, "What failed here at Birney was a control panel ... which you could think of as a computer ... like a computer that runs your car ... so it's not something we have sitting on the shelf that we can inventory ... it's a more difficult problem than we typically have."

Fresno Unified fires up the air conditioners at every school site two weeks before the beginning of school ... every system is monitored by computer at the district's service center in northwest Fresno. According to the district ... every air-conditioning unit at every school site was up and running Sunday night before the start of school.

Karin Temple said, "Unfortunately with 98 schools something may go wrong ... as soon as it does ... we address it immediately"

The district provided fans and parents helped out with water bottles to help keep the kids cool. To fix the problem ... a technician from Sacramento drove to Fresno to install a part that was flown in from New York. By 3:30 Wednesday afternoon ... the air-conditioning vents were blowing cold air once again. And just in case there's a problem in the future ... the district ordered an extra part for the control panel.

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