Hawaii governor follows through on promise to cool schools
Posted September 2
HONOLULU — Hawaii Gov. David Ige's administration has fulfilled its promise of installing air conditioning in 1,000 classrooms.
Ige was at Nanakuli High and Intermediate School on Thursday as the 1,000th classroom became air-conditioned, The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported (http://bit.ly/2exWBKc ).
"We had committed to air-conditioning and cooling a thousand classrooms, and today this is the 1,000th classroom, here at Nanakuli," Ige said. "It took tremendous effort."
The classrooms are in 88 schools across the state and all are on the priority list for heat abatement.
Another 300 classrooms will be cooled by the end of September with the $100 million appropriated for the project by the Legislature.
Dann Carlson, assistant superintendent for school facilities, said the Department of Education opted to use sun-powered systems for the vast majority of the classrooms because the electrical grid at most campuses couldn't handle window units.
Nanakuli senior class president Talafaaiva Ealim said students are happy with the change in classroom climate.
"I can tell you, it's made a huge impact here at Nanakuli High and Intermediate School," he said. "The learning environment is way, much more comfortable. ... It's a whole lot easier for the teachers to teach now that students are paying more attention."
Of the roughly 11,000 public school classrooms across the state, about 5,000 of them now have AC, Carlson said.