The state of Maryland has approved a waiver that will allow the Baltimore County district to fast-track installation of air conditioning at 12 schools without air conditioning.
WJZ-TV reports that County Executive Kevin Kamenetz asked for the waiver from the Interagency Commission on School Construction so that bidding for air conditioning installation can start right now—months before the state spending board gives its final approval.
“It’s making a decision on what’s best for our children, and if we can expedite this process for air conditioning to be finished in the Baltimore County area, then I think we should do that,” says Karen Salmon, State Superintendent of Schools.
The county district has 36 campuses without central air conditioning. It has had to cancel classes on four days this school year because of excessive heat.
The waiver means 12 schools—two high schools, five middle schools and five elementary schools—will have air conditioning sooner than expected.
Installing air conditioning in each school will cost between $6 million and $10 million.
In the Baltimore City district, 76 city schools buildings do not have air conditioning.
Video from WJZ-TV: