School District To Receive Additional Funding To Upgrade Outdated HVAC Systems In Baltimore City Schools – CBS Baltimore
BALTIMORE (WJZ) — More than two dozen Baltimore City Schools currently have no air conditioning, and some of the warmer days have forced those schools to close or leave early.
As temperatures begin to rise in the 1990s, some Baltimore City Schools are being fired early because they don’t have air conditioning or the units aren’t working properly.
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“Most of the challenge is having access to resources to consistently replace systems across the portfolio,” said Lynette Washington, Chief Operating Officer for Baltimore City Schools.
Chief Operating Officer Lynette Washington said the district gets about $50 million each year from the city and state to build schools and install a brand new HVAC system comes at a high cost. The cost is anywhere from $15 to $20 million, depending on the square footage of the school.
Over the past five years, the school system has installed vertical packaging units to keep individual classrooms cool.
“As we bring new systems online, are we always thinking about how we are going to replace our existing systems that already work?” said Washington.
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Of the 24 schools with AC, 10 are now under construction, six are in design and four are scheduled to receive upgrades – most of which are expected to be completed within the next three years.
As part of Maryland’s Build to Learn Act, the district will receive additional funding to build new schools to replace old schools, including schools with outdated HVAC systems.
The Baltimore teachers union and parents said it is critical to student success.
“I would like the school system to prioritize updating and replacing the air conditioners,” said Diamonte Brown, president of the Baltimore City Teacher’s Union.
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“How can they learn if they have to constantly focus on getting cool? or be hot? Man, I want to drink, they can’t concentrate on their learning,” said Denishia Demonia, parent.