ACs Not A Simple Fix

Kenneth Wong, Student Life Writer

Both students and faculty believe that the presence or lack of air conditioners in classrooms affect the learning experience of students. They believe that having ACs installed in the classrooms would be a strategic and valuable investment that will help improve the students’ ability to learn, especially in the summer when the temperature is higher.

A teacher, Mr. Young, expressed that especially around the summertime, ACs would greatly benefit the school as a whole since it would provide the students, faculty, and staff with a cool, comfortable environment. For students, being able to have a comfortable environment is important to their learning because it helps keep them more focused. As for teachers, they work long hours in their classrooms and AC’s would also allow them to work in a more comfortable environment.

Students have said that installing ACs would have been a better investment than the building of the locker room. They stated that a better choice would have been to use the money that is being spent for the locker room structure to be used for ACs instead.

One student, Sungjae Ko argued, “They (Kalani High School) paid like $4 million to build the locker room and solar panels, but it would be better to install AC in all classrooms.”

Vice-Principal Dunn also agrees that it is hard for Kalani High School to not have ACs. This is especially true since school now starts in early August and average temperatures are higher than when students used to start in September. It is important to adjust to the changes that arise as time progresses.

VP Dunn explained that Kalani does not have enough money to pay for electricity if the school were to install ACs.  Even if the school were to install the units, they may not work because they would draw too much power from the system.

“In fact, some classrooms are tripping already because they have microwaves and whatnot,” she said. 

The classrooms would require a costly retrofit. “Our electrical system is an old system so we have to upgrade that before we can get ACs,” VP Dunn said. She mentioned that they are striving to get ACs with the school’s money since the state does not provide them with funding.

She clarified that the state provided Kalani High School with the solar panels and the funds for the girls’ locker room. This money could not be used for ACs.

There currently are some classrooms with ceiling fans, but it is Kalani’s goal to continue installing ceiling fans for the first floors of most buildings, V.P. Dunn said. She explained that installing ceiling fans instead is the best option since it uses less electricity than AC.

“If we have ceiling fans, they take up less electricity so I might be looking to do something like that. D upstairs has ceiling fans and then our next group of classrooms would be B. That’s summer of 2018,” she said.

Students and faculty would all benefit from cooler classrooms, but it’s not a simple fix. 

“I feel for the students and teachers,” VP Dunn said.