Debate over AC in schools heats up

  • Article by: Steve Brandt , Star Tribune
  • Updated: September 3, 2013 - 3:01 PM

The hellishly hot conditions in some Minneapolis classrooms last week represent the district’s push to boost achievement by opening school a week early clashing with the reality of an aging district not fully equipped to deal with record heat.

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sethkirkSep. 3, 13 8:08 PM

Somehow, we managed to educate our children long before air conditioning existed.

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hobie2Sep. 4, 1312:09 AM

I am thinking the problem is easily solved by sending the adults to update their math skills, and then giving the try for a solution a go again -- bear with me here --"Delaying testing until late May or early June also would make it hard to meet the Legislature’s requirement to report test results by Oct. 1, she [the state] said."... So some schools open ONE week early to get ONE week extra teaching time before tests... OK - But the teachers, administrators, and state can't move the testing date back ONE week because -- moving the testing to the end of the year leaves only EIGHTEEN weeks of grading and entering the data into the computer program and printing the various reports and a mere SEVENTEEN weeks is not enough to grade multiple choice and scan the sheets and send the results to the state to put in a program that prints standard reports of standard tests... anyone see a management problem here?

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hobie2Sep. 4, 1312:15 AM

OK, OK... I know back before computers, kids took written finals during the last week of class, teachers graded all the papers and computed grades, calculated valedictorian etc., and filled in the report cards for the kids to take home last day of class - all in a week... But with modern technology, to do it now takes a MINIMUM of EIGHTEEN WEEKS?... And we need to put tens of millions of dollars of AC in schools in order to start one week early for...? Excruciating slow counting? Summer vacation? Each party in the counting and compiling chain can't have their due date brought in by ONE DAY each?... Seriously - does the state Dept of Ed know how really dumb their position sounds?

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true gritSep. 4, 13 9:06 AM

They could put a/c in the schools for a lot less $ using mini-split systems, but that wouldn't create union jobs. That being said I think that it would be a waste of money to put a/c in all schools. Schools should not start before labor day.

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nsfSep. 4, 1312:23 PM

Several things to note here: 1) As mentioned above--grade faster. Seriously?!? Thousands of kids are suffering because you can't scan sheets faster? 2) Don't start school before September 1. Period. I would prefer after Labor Day, but can compromise on Sept 1. When is the last time the overnight low in September was above 80 degrees? Answer: Never. 3) Minneapolis needs to have a district policy on Heat the same way it does with Cold. This was a huge oversight, and "ice water" is not an acceptable solution. Not to mention these huge old brick behemoths are much more capable of staying warm in January than they are of staying cool in August. Recognize that we don't have the infrastructure in place to adequately deal with heat, that the money to fix that isn't coming anytime soon, and plan accordingly. I actually love my kids' school in Minneapolis, but every time something has to go up a level into the district arena to get done, it has been nothing but an exercise in frustration and futitily. Proper Prior Planning....

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IHATELOGINS0Sep. 4, 13 3:38 PM

Just buy a few occillating fans or ceiling fans for each room, good enough to get through the few HOT days and make sure the water fountain is working. Cost=next to nothing!

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ginny6Sep. 4, 13 3:42 PM

"Somehow, we managed to educate our children long before air conditioning existed." ---- We didn't have tropical dew points of 76 back then.

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ginny6Sep. 4, 13 3:55 PM

"Somehow, we managed to educate our children long before air conditioning existed." ----- Not before Labor Day!

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