Sunday, February 06, 2011

Kiddies swelter in "green" classrooms

Many parents are unimpressed with the new school buildings hurriedly being construction around the country:
Parents from hundreds of schools have resorted to paying for basic resources such as airconditioning, even while the federal government's Building the Education Revolution has spent millions on new "green" classrooms with only natural ventilation.
But there are problems even when parents are willing to fund airconditioning installations in newly constructed BER buildings: so as to not void a building's warranty, only the BER contractor can retrofit airconditioning.
Lathlain Primary School P&C member David Quartermaine-Smith said the BER contractor had quoted about $70,000 to install air-conditioning in its new kindergarten - which was $50,000 more than other quotes - and insisted no else could install it within 12 months or it would void the warranty.
Also, it's likely that retrofitting airconditioning is significantly more expensive than airconditioning installed as part of a building's original designs.

Oh well, with the cost of electricity going up the way it is, it won't be long before airconditioning is too expensive to run.

Update: A concerned parent makes a very good point about un-airconditioned government buildings:
The president of the New South Wales Teachers Federation, Bob Lipscombe, says the policy is absurd.

"In this day and age, in the 21st century, there'd be very few new buildings being built by government for public service that weren't appropriately air conditioned or air cooled these days," he said.

"We believe a similar policy should apply in relation to schools."
Fair enough.


Anonymous Dan Lewis said...

This is why I'm against the flood levy.

Despite sanctimonious letters to the papers insisting it's "only a dollar a week", the simple fact is that money will probably go to Labor's mates (at worst) or hugely overpriced and ineffective contractors (at best). Either way, a total waste of money which will be followed up by insistence they did a good job.

After the Pink Batts and the BER, I couldn't trust the government to build a backyard dunny for less than quarter of a million bucks.

It's not about the amount in question. It's about value for money.

12:00 PM  
Anonymous ar said...

From memory the BER contracts specifically excluded A/C. Dear Julia did not want her great name associated with carbon emissions, I guess.

6:34 PM  

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