Students cope with ongoing heat wave

Due to an unprecedented heat wave moving through Northern California, Palo Alto High School’s Associative Student Body is searching for ways to help students deal with the high temperatures. 

Principal Brent Kline and sophomore Associative Student Body Vice President Linden Wang prepare to serve Popsicles on the Quad during Lunch as a result of the high temperatures that moved through Northern California from Southern California this weekend. According to sophomore President Julian Hong, the treat was meant to help students stay cool. “Paly Teacher Student Association bought Popsicles for us, and it’s a very hot day, we decided to hand them out today just to help the students cool down.” (Photo: Jonathan Chen)

In anticipation of a rise in temperature, Principal Brent Kline sent faculty an email this morning that listed ways to stay protected from the heat. He advised staff to keep hydrated, avoid outdoor exercise, and conserve energy to protect the city’s power supply.

The heat wave, which started over labor day weekend, has led to the hottest days of the year in the Bay Area, according to CBS News.

According to senior Palo Alto Unified School District Student Board Representative Johannah Seah, ASB wanted to help lift the moods of students. So, in response to the heat, the Paly Teacher Student Association provided ASB with the popsicles that were handed out during today’s lunch period.   

Despite these efforts, students such as junior Gabriella Loops said the heat wave has made it difficult to concentrate. 

Wang hands out popsicles to students. (Photo: Jonathan Chen)

“I feel very uncomfortable right now,” Loops said while sheltered under an overhang to avoid the heat. “And it’s making me not want to go to my third period. I also don’t really want to come to school tomorrow, if I’m gonna feel like this.”

Nurse Mary Mendoza said the nurses’ office is preparing to help students in the heat.

“We have water here for students to come in and help themselves to, ice if they need ice, and rest if they need to rest,” Mendoza said. “We check if they [students] have a headache, tell them about the signs of dehydration, which a headache is probably one of the first signs of, just kind of educating them and letting them know they can come and rest here and have water.” 

Senior Terra Majors keeps a gallon-water bottle to stay hydrated in the heat. (Photo: Jonathan Chen)

Excessive heat exposure can cause lasting damage, Mendoza said.

“Heatstroke, heat exhaustion, [are problems in high temperature] especially if you’re going to be exercising outside, which I hopefully advise against,” Mendoza said. “Those kinds of things can really make someone have no energy and feel sick, and heatstroke can actually kill someone.”

According to track and field head coach Michael Davidson, making sure student-athletes are out of the heat is a top priority.

“One thing we are going to do is adapt and change the practice to the morning, it going to be cooler in the morning,” Davidson said. “Additionally, we’re going to be inside the gym and the small gym to work out, so we got a plus with that.”