In the hot months of June and September, Loy Norrix students and staff have been trying their hardest to stand the heat, but its hard when “…you’re worrying about how much you’re sweating and whether you’re going to stick to the table,” said Loy Norrix mathematics teacher Adam Hosler.
Students and staff became extremely frustrated with the heat and their inability to learn and teach during class time.
In early September, most days are around eighty degrees, but the classrooms are even more unbearable. “It’s been like 95 and even hotter than that,” said Loy Norrix science teacher Julie Young who has gone without air conditioning for 18 years.
“You can’t be ready to learn until you have had your basic needs addressed…and I would call having an appropriate temperature in the classroom a basic need,” said Loy Norrix English teacher Anne Bowser.
Bowser was referencing Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. The first and most important tier of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs is physiological, which states that food, water, temperature, and other basic needs have to be met before any higher learning can be achieved.
The absence of air conditioning has not only negatively affected the learning environment for students, but it has interfered with teachers’ plans as well, which is a nuisance.
“When I know it’s going to be hot, I try to plan things that are less intensive, so things that require a little bit less concentration,” said Hosler.
This issue has kept student’s learning capacity to a minimum because they are unable to focus. According to the website Air Group, when a classroom is too warm or cold, the brain does not focus on learning. It instead is trying to solve how to get the body to cool down or warm up.
“It’s like constant sweating even with the windows open,” said senior Rylee Thomas.
Thomas isn’t the only student who feels this way.
“When I get really hot in class, I just feel gross in class, it’s not pleasant,” said senior Josh Randazzo.
Extremely hot temperatures in the classroom may also be linked to students’ poor attendance.
“When I know it’s going to be hot, it’s a lot harder for me to be motivated to go to school,” said junior Willa Kuttner.
According to the website Attendance Works, absenteeism in the first month of school can predict poor attendance throughout the entire school year.
Temperatures in the classroom should be at an appropriate level for students as well as teachers. If we can afford to remodel the exterior of the school, why can’t we afford to have the basic needs of students met? Having a fair temperature in the school is just as important as having food provided for the students and having clean water to drink.
As Bowser said, “If prisons are air conditioned, why aren’t schools?”
Classrooms without air conditioning: A-10, A-12, A-13, A-14, A-20, C-17, D-9, D-12, D-13, D-14, K-4, K-6, K-10, K-12, M-1, M-1A, M-3, M-10, M-11, M-12E, M-12W, M-13, M-14, TV Room.
Classrooms with poorly working air conditioning: C-10, C-12, C-13, C-14, C-15, C-16, C-19, C-23.