Some Students, Teachers Face Another Year Without A/C

Related Story

COLUMBIA - Students in Columbia start their school year on Thursday. But just because the summer is over for students, doesn't mean the hot summer temperatures are over too. West and Jefferson Junior High Schools are the last two schools in the Columbia district without air conditioning.

"It gets very hot in this building," said West Junior High School Principal Sandra Logan. "It is very difficult to learn when it is hotter inside the classroom than outside."

Teachers at West have also noticed a decrease in student learning when the weather is warm and there's no air conditioning to provide relief.

"It's hard on the kids," said Brenda Blankenship, who teaches social studies at West. "You're giving them information they need to learn and all they want to do is put their head down because they're hot."

Even students have admitted keeping cool ends up being more important than the teacher's lesson plan.

"The last class of the day it'll be really hot. You don't really pay attention. You're just trying to keep cool," said Brandon Jones, a ninth grader at West.

Several school districts in mid-Missouri have all of their schools air conditioned, including Jefferson City.

Students and teachers say they hope the cooling trend will continue into the fall. But this year will be the last for students and teachers to stick it out at West and Jefferson Junior Highs. The schools expect to get air conditioning for the 2013-2014 school year.