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Heat causes early dismissal for Marshalltown High School

T-R PHOTO BY ADAM SODDERS – Marshalltown High School students leave class early Monday afternoon due to heat. Portions of the school do not have air conditioning.

Monday brought a 1 p.m. dismissal for Marshalltown High School students due to heat.

The early out followed a pattern of issues related to high heat at the high school, which is not fully air-conditioned.

Monday was the first heat-related delay of the 2019-20 school year. Similar delays took place in 2018.

“The building, how it is set up, retains a lot of heat,” said district Communications Director Andrew Potter.

The National Weather Service showed the heat index for Marshalltown Monday reaching 94 degrees.

Iowa Department of Public Health guidelines indicated that heat index is rated as “uncomfortable” but does not meet the “may be hazardous” mark of 100 degrees.

Community members have advocated for getting the high school fully air-conditioned. One prominent voice has been local attorney Larry McKibben, who spoke at a 2018 school board meeting calling for such a measure and for the community to help make it happen.

Potter said district leaders are aware of the heat issue at the high school and plan to address it.

“It’s not a quick fix there, it’s something that’s been on our plans here. It’s something that we’re going to continue to look into,” he said.

There is no specific timeline available on such a project.

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Contact Adam Sodders at

641-753-6611 or

asodders@timesrepublican.com