Peoria Unified schools reopen following power outage from Thursday’s storms

Six schools in the Peoria Unified School District that were closed Friday due to monsoon destruction will be back open on Monday.
Published: Aug. 21, 2022 at 9:45 PM MST
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PEORIA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) — The extent of the destruction from Thursday’s storm in Peoria could be seen from a bird’s eye view. Heavy wind and rain knocked down trees and power lines across the city. Danielle Airey with the Peoria Unified School District says six schools closed after the storm knocked out their power, preventing them from using air conditioning. “We had a microburst occur right in the area of Peoria High School and in that surrounding community, we have neighborhood schools and a number that are close by,” she said.

More than 4,200 students were out of class Friday because of the closures. The district has plans ahead of incidents like this so students and teachers will not have to make up for Friday’s closure. APS restored power to the last 200 people reporting outages in Peoria by Sunday afternoon. “We have some additional minutes built into our learning plan for the year,” Airey said.

While not all schools suspended class, physical education teacher Brian Collins says many people didn’t show up to work Friday. “I didn’t know about the freeways, but made it there. We were short 10 teachers out of 46 I believe. Specials were canceled. That day I became a fifth grade teacher,” he said.

He believes part of it was that many people were stuck cleaning up the mess the storm left behind. It’s also a mess Peoria Unified says it will be dealing with for the next few weeks. “Peoria High School’s campus was the hardest hit so there were cleanup efforts going on throughout the day Friday, into much of the day yesterday as well,” said Airey. “We were fortunate most of the damage was on the exterior of the campus.”