Leesville Power Outage

Eric Broer’s classroom, with the lights off. During the outage, Leesville’s lights lost power, though some in the hallways remained on due to a generator. (Photo courtesy of Blase Harriss)

On Monday, April 17, Leesville High School had a power outage during and after its second period. The outage disrupted the daily schedule, as well as classroom instruction, until it eventually came back on after second period, which typically ends at 10:30.

The school’s Promethean boards lost power in the outage, along with many of the lights. 

Additionally, the school internet was knocked out, making student Chromebooks useless for online activities and making it impossible for teachers to show videos or other online content in their classes.

The Intermediate Theater class was watching Shakespeare’s The Tempest when the power went out, turning off the Promethean board the class was watching the performance on. Though that day the teacher had intended for students to finish watching The Tempest, the class had to finish watching it the next day.

The outage was incredibly disruptive to classes even if they weren’t using technology. 

Erica Ostling, junior, said that in math class, “We got a lot less done because everyone was freaking out and everyone was distracted by the flickering lights… for the most part of the [extended 2nd period]… we kinda just sat around and… did nothing.”

During the outage and for a short while afterwards, the school instructed students to stay in their second periods until told to move to their next period, even after the power eventually came back on.

However, this instruction to wait to transition was not communicated well. Quite a few students tried to walk to their lunch and third period at a different time than the school intended, and faculty had to tell them to go back to their second period classroom.

“All the schedules were adjusted, which kinda made it more difficult to… figure out… when to go to your classes, cause the new schedule wasn’t… out everywhere yet,” said Ostling.

After the outage, Leesville operated on a – hour delay schedule— shortening class lengths to compensate for the time lost waiting for the power outage to end. This schedule shortened lunch to thirty-four minutes in length, and students’ third and fourth period classes to an hour and fourteen minutes. 


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