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Junior high boiler was repaired quickly

ALPENA — A boiler that went down Wednesday at Thunder Bay Junior High School before school started was back up and running just after the school day began, officials said.

A post on the Alpena Public Schools Facebook page at around 7 a.m. said one of the two boilers at the school went down and the district was working to get it back up and running.

Superintendent John VanWagoner said the boiler needed to be reset.

“We got it fixed and it warmed up right away after school got started,” he said. “It was cold a little bit first hour.”

Students were allowed to wear coats in colder classrooms until temperatures were back to normal.

Those boilers are not a part of the work that would be funded through the district’s request in March for permission to sell $33.9 million in bonds that would be used for numerous facilities repairs and renovations across district buildings. VanWagoner said the boilers at the junior high are original from when the school was built in 1999.

“They’re well-maintained,” he said.

VanWagoner said Wednesday’s boiler issue wasn’t a major one, compared to other issues going on within the district.

Boilers in other APS schools are between 15 and 55 years old and some aren’t working properly this school year.

The malfunctioning boilers in the other schools have resulted in students and staff either wearing coats in the classroom if it’s cold or figuring out ways to dress comfortably if the classroom is hot.

CORRECTION: This story has been updated to reflect that district boilers are as old as 55 years. The age range was incorrect in an earlier version of this story.

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