Monday, November 19, 2007

Another thing public education doesn't get right...

...appears to be climate control. In New York City, my classrooms were generally incredibly hot in the winter. Yes, the winter. The heaters would be extremely overactive to the point that I would wear short sleeve shirts when it was the dead of winter. Conversely, if you were unlucky your classroom would not be used during summer school so you wouldn't have an air conditioner which meant you would be crammed into a tiny classroom with 30+ students in 90+ degree weather. If you were lucky, you'd have an air conditioner that hummed so loud you never got that quiet, everyone at work feeling going and everyone froze because they were a bit too powerful. Additionally, the students always argued over whether it should be on or off. Good times!
Now, 3000 miles across the country, I have a feeling of kinship with my NYC pedagogical sisters and brothers. When I got into my classroom at 7:45 this morning, I was greeted with blasting air conditioning. A quick weather check on the computer reveals it being 33 degrees out this morning. It's parent-teacher conferences here so I'm now writing at 7:22 PM having spent more time in my classroom today than I do in most weeks (due to the fact that I only have 3 conferences scheduled today and I spend most school days all over the building- not just in my room). When the principal dropped by he was pretty incredulous. The heating and cooling is controlled at a central building which is not open at 7:30 at night. So I've got my fleece on (thanks, Dad!) and my winter hat and my hands are freezing. Unreal!

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