Education

Hot classrooms plague Lexington’s Henry Clay High School for second year in a row

Lexington’s newest elementary school welcomes teachers into their classrooms

Teachers of the new Brenda Cowan Elementary School settle into their classrooms ahead of the start of the 2019 school year.
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Teachers of the new Brenda Cowan Elementary School settle into their classrooms ahead of the start of the 2019 school year.

Last year around the first of September, Fayette County Public Schools Board chair Stephanie Spires said hot temperatures in classrooms at Henry Clay High School warranted an upgrade to equipment.

On Thursday morning in a Facebook post, Spires indicated that hot classrooms were again an issue at the school.

Spires said in the post that she had been monitoring the situation at Henry Clay closely for several days.

“Crews have been working around the clock on the AC units but this is no comfort to the students, teachers, and staff inside the building,” Spires said in the post. “As soon as one goes up and the building starts cooling, one goes down. As of right now all 23 units are working and the team just installed 8 temporary units a few minutes ago. I understand the building is still hot, but hopefully we will start to see the impact of these additional units and the building begins cooling this morning.”

School district spokeswoman Lisa Deffendall said Thursday that different air conditioning units had problems last year and those were repaired.

“Everything is fine today,” Deffendall said around noon. Spires told the Herald-Leader at 1 p.m. that she heard the building was cooler Thursday.

Deffendall provided a letter that Henry Clay Principal Paul Little sent to families on Aug. 19.

“I am writing to make you aware that I have been working in partnership with the district office to address Henry Clay’s HVAC issues and address classroom spaces that have been unusually warm,” Little said in the letter. “Primarily the issues have been with two of our twenty-three units and today, the parts arrived and repairs were made to both units. In addition to supplying fans and making classroom changes to address hot rooms, the district has found a supplier of portable air-conditioning units that will arrive on site this afternoon. We plan to have these units in place cooling several classrooms until they are no longer needed.”

He said he was committed to keeping Henry Clay a safe place to learn and work.

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