Return of hot weather affecting schools, sports teams

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ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI) -Hot and humid summertime weather rolls on for the St. Louis region. The above normal temperatures will be around through the Labor Day holiday with little chance of rain. This stretch of big heat comes after an early August that felt more like early October.

The heat can be tough on teachers and students.  Tom Stahlman is the principal at St. John the Baptist Catholic Grade School in Valla Ridge.

Stahlman said, “There’s a safety issue for the children.”

The windows are wide open and the fans are spinning inside classrooms but the students were not there this afternoon.  They were dismissed early because it’s so hot.  They only have air conditioners for the gym and resource room.  The classrooms were getting hotter by the moment.

Stahlman said, “It’s very difficult for the teachers and the children once you get past about 11:30, 12 o’clock. It gets very difficult to learn.”

Classes on Tuesday will also be dismissed early. Stahlman is still deciding on the rest of the week.

Matt Irvin is the football coach at Kirkwood High School.

He says, “Safety for athletes is our primary job.”

Irvin and other coaches are following Missouri State High School Activity Association guidelines to make sure players are not overcome by the heat during practice.  They do things like work-out inside. Players said they are always prepared for the weather.

Senior Eric Phillips says, “The coaches tell us to hydrate and we have a good training staff which they are always bringing water to us.”

Senior Antonio Weston added, “Never had a problem with heat anything like that whatsoever.  We just prepare beforehand.”

Because the heat wave is expected to last through the week the coach is making a change.

Irvin said, “This Wednesday morning in fact we’re moving our practice to six a.m. instead of a 3 o’clock practice in order to really try to get a decent  practice in before the heat gets bad.”

Hazelwood East and Central High Schools have moved up their varsity football game times this Saturday to ten in the morning instead of one in the afternoon.

If you know someone who needs help staying cool, please contact Cool Down St. Louis. You can call the Resource Hotline, Monday through Friday, from 314-241-7668.