Tag Archives: Hot schools

55 children eating lunch in one classroom

We continue to hear from more people across Ontario about the importance of safe, healthy, well-maintained schools that provide environments conducive to learning. 

One Ontario citizen who is both a parent and an education worker sent us a copy of a letter she wrote to Premier Wynne during the heat wave in September. Many important points are raised in this letter, including the importance of ensuring that new school buildings are safe, healthy buildings that provide environments conducive to learning. 

I work in a kindergarten class, which is a new build with many new south-facing windows. The picture here was taken on day 3 of the September 2017 heat wave when I had finally had enough of three to five year olds suffering (the temperature was the lowest on this day).

We actually had to relocate the students to a cooler class (not air-conditioned) at lunch where 55 children had to eat lunch in one classroom just to be comfortable enough to eat their lunch. One child became so overheated that she had a terrible nosebleed that was difficult to stop because her temperature was so high.

Given the recent climate changes over the past few years that regularly sees parents dropping off ineffective fans for their children’s comfort, I would like you to consider increasing funding to deal specifically with the climate control in schools without air conditioning.

No person can possibly learn anything or function at a reasonable level at 34 degrees celsius. We simply must ensure that adequate funding exists for each classroom to maintain temperatures conducive to learning. 

Thank you very much for your consideration of this request.

Baby, it’s HOT outside…

Who can focus and learn in a hot room?

On very warm days, chances are that your children learn in classrooms with open windows but no air conditioning. Their classrooms are stifling hot. Students and teachers struggle to stay focused and get the job done. You and I went to school in those same classrooms and survived… so what’s the big deal? 

Things have changed: 

• Firstly, we have warmer average temperatures for the shoulder seasons. Spring and fall are hotter than when we attended school. Children have to cope with difficult classroom temperatures for much longer periods most years. 

• Secondly, Ontario schools are not designed for intense heat, and they are being retrofitted with safety windows that now barely open. There is no cross ventilation with other classrooms, as is evidenced in the photo here.

• Thirdly, there is also research that shows that controlling the classroom temperatures significantly improves the academic success of the class.

There is a solution but it won’t come any time soon without your help. There are new options available for classroom temperatures in Ontario that cannot be rolled out until Provincial funding is made available. 

The most difficult part of this issue is that politicians with the power over school funding sit in cool, air conditioned offices in the summer and warm heated ones in the winter. Is it any wonder there is no empathy for our students and teachers?

Contact your MPP now to demand funding for safe, well-maintained schools. Call or email your local MPP at their Constituency Office. You are their constituent and they care what you think because they want your vote in June 2018.