Portland Public Schools will open for two-hour sessions for all elementary school grade levels by next week. In advance of reopening, the district has made multiple COVID-19 preparations.
But one thing it has not done: surveyed the district's buildings to find out which windows can open—one key way to get fresh air into buildings.
The district responded to a WW public records request for a list of windows that can open by saying it didn't have such a document. "We do not have any documents surveying windows," wrote Ryan Vandehey, PPS public records officer, on March 19.
District spokeswoman Karen Werstein says PPS has other means of finding out about windows that won't open: Faculty and staff can report problems to the district on a case-by-case basis.
But the district did hire a contractor to analyze air quality through "a representative sample of classrooms in every school," even though state reopening criteria do not require schools to meet specific air quality standards. PPS says the work began by March 18.
"We are expecting a narrative report and a spreadsheet report for each school," Werstein says, "and we expect those reports to arrive as they write up the results, not all at once at the end. None have been received yet."
The district plans to post those results.