More than 30 ceiling fans were installed at the Antigua Girls High School over the weekend as the Ministry of Education and the Board of Education try to bring relief to students and teachers affected by poorly ventilated classrooms.
It has been more than a week since the Emergency Medical Services (EMS) had to be called to render aid to the female students, who started fainting at the school.
There were four days of repeated fainting incidents last week alone and again on Monday, even after the fans were installed, blaring sirens were rushing to render medical aid to students.
“The Ministry of Education is concerned and we have asked the Board of Education to examine the situation at the Antigua Girls High School because over the weekend some 32 fans were installed, but, it was not quite resolved because they had issues [Monday],” Director of Education, Clare Browne said
Poor ventilation was being blamed for dozens of students fainting at the all-girls school that is located on Newgate Street. Parents said that despite giving their daughters additional water to hydrate throughout the day, the girls were still fainting.
Last week Monday, parents were called by the school’s administration and asked to collect their daughters who had fainted.
Then, again on Tuesday, a fresh bout of fainting spells occurred and parents had to be called for their children, and the same thing happened again on Thursday and Friday. The affected students are assigned to several classrooms.
“[Yesterday] morning, a team, including from the Ministry of Education, the education officer for secondary schools and the Board of Education went to examine the school. Representatives from the Board of Education special projects department were charged with assessing the situation and finding immediate solutions,” Browne said.
Electricians installed fans in the classrooms, in some cases four fans had to be installed because of the size of the room.
OBSERVER media spoke with two parents whose daughters needed medical treatment. They said that now the fans are installed they anticipate their daughters will be able to function in the usually hot classrooms.
There are over 600 girls enrolled at the school.
A teacher who spoke with our newsroom added, “I had lessons in one of the classrooms after the fans were installed and it was the coolest the class was in a while.”