Kaiser band students to wait several more weeks before air conditioning fix

Kaiser High School

Band students at Kaiser High School will have to wait even longer for relief.

It’s been nearly three weeks now since the air conditioner broke in the Music and Arts Building.

The Department of Education originally told us a part to fix it was about to be shipped, but we learned Thursday it will now take at least two more weeks.

A spokesman for the DOE says the air conditioner is just so old that the manufacturer does not have the part, which is called a condenser coil, in its warehouse. So the company has to build it and then ship it over.

Since we’ve reported the problem, the school has gotten some help. Longs Drugs provided 20 fans, but school officials tell us it’s still so hot that the teacher has to give students a break and walk out of the classroom every 20 minutes.

“It’s not good. It’s very frustrating. I think for the students and Mr. Bataluna, there have been days when they just weren’t able to do much because it’s so hot even with fans,” said parent Jennifer Butler.

At times, students can’t finish the school day. One of them was sent home.

“I believe so, yeah, (it was) heat-related. She’s going to go home, maybe she might see a doctor later today, so we’re going to go have a look at her and have everything checked out,” said Clifton Gunderson, whose niece is in the school band.

Homecoming is this weekend so parents say the students have been practicing even more.

The only bright spot in that is that they can do some of it outside after school. While the heat doesn’t seem to have taken anything out of their performances during game day, parents tell us being in the sweltering classroom is definitely wearing the students down.

“It’s sad and it’s not good for the instruments. Band is (my daughter’s) favorite subject and she just comes home frustrated and exhausted and I think they all are at this point,” Butler said.

“I just hope that it gets better, the situation gets better and something gets done about it,” Gunderson said.

A spokesman for the DOE says the plan is to install the part on Sept. 25.

There’s no word yet on how much it will cost or if it’s better to just replace the whole air conditioner.

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