2017-05-03 / Front Page

Mayor Announces All Queens School Classrooms To Be Air Conditioned By 2022

By Joyce Vetere Milowski and Dan Miller

Photos Dan Miller/DMD IMAGESPhotos Dan Miller/DMD IMAGESOn Tuesday April 25, a day before presenting his Executive Fiscal Budget to the New York City Council Mayor Bill De Blasio was joined by School Chancellor Carman Farina and members of the City Council to announce that all classrooms will be air conditioned no later than 2022.

“Making sure that all classrooms are air conditioned is one more commitment we’re making to ensure that nothing stands in the way of our students and a quality education,” said a jubilant Mayor. And the taxpayers will pay for it at the cost of $28.75 million.

Standing with Mayor De Blasio for the announcement, School Chancellor Carman Farina Said,” Schools in older buildings have long struggled to keep instructional spaces cool during summer months and now they will be able to install air conditioners in every classroom.”

Currently about 75 percent of the city’s public school classrooms have air conditioning. The remaining 11,500 are sweltering during the hot summer months creating a problem when summer schools students need a comfortable environment to learn. This funding will help air condition an additional 2,000 classrooms. In addition to the funding for the air conditioners almost $50 million additional will have to be spent for the upgrade the school’s electrical system to run the air conditioners.

Former teacher and currently Chair of the City Council’s Education Committee, Daniel Dromm said, “I am pleased that Mayor De Blasio has demonstrated his commitment to funding the installation of air conditioners in all public school classrooms.”
Queens Council Member and chair of the Finance Committee, Julissa Ferreras-Copeland agreed that it was a project long overdue. “For as long as I was a student and after school administrator, our classrooms and the children in them suffered during the hot summer months. I applaud the Mayor for addressing this long-standing issue and making this capital investment to bring New York City’s schools up to par with the rest of the city’s buildings…. Our children should be able to focus and learn in an environment that is safe, comfortable and independent of any extreme weather.

The funding and installation of the air conditioners in classrooms will take be phased over the next 5 years.

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