Either that, or the PTA there may need to resort to selling items out of the Neiman Marcus catalog after one school official told them they might be able to get their air conditioning system they want by raising the $1.6 million themselves.
Last month parents of at the school wrote school officials and volunteered to privately purchase window units for classrooms at the school. (Both letters are attached to this story.)
Michael Sines, executive director of the school system's department of physical facilities, rejected the idea saying "in good conscience, I cannot support the proposal."
His letter went on to cite a number of reasons: mechanical and installation costs and the cost of installing remote thermostats in each room. Sines also wrote that the proposal could possibly create an unsafe condition for teachers and students based on national standards set by the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers.
Then he offered another idea.
"A second option is to submit a proposal to fund the air conditioning project as a group or organization," wrote Sines. "Obviously this approach would require great sacrifice on the part of the organization and community. If this option is seriously considered, a member of the department of physical facilities would be assigned to assist in completing the necessary documents. The current project estimate to install a central air conditioning system is roughly $1.6 million. The first cost estimate for a central system is only $600,000 more than the window unit approach. When life cycle and maintenance and operational costs are factored in, the central system is actually less expensive over a 15-20 year period."
Sines closed the letter saying he hoped the information would be helpful and referred the parents back to their school principal.
"I don't think I've ever seen a letter like the one Mr. Sines sent residents," said Franchot.