Brainfreeze: No Flexibility in Classroom Temperatures


Alex Carlin, News Editor

It’s no secret that there are plenty of potential distractions and impediments to learning that we have all experienced throughout our school years. Whether it be hunger, tiredness, something on our mind, or anything else that shifts our focus. One of the things that falls under this category that is often overlooked is temperature.

A comfortable temperature is key to being able to stay focused, and anything too hot or too cold can create trouble in the ability to learn. The problem in our classrooms lies in the latter, despite the fact that it is blazing hot outside it is still overly cold in classrooms and it is noticeable the entire time. So why is this a big problem?

The answer is a major lack of flexibility. Teachers have thermostats in their room, however they only have the ability to change the temperature by 3 degrees, in a predetermined range out of their control, according to Mr. Campbell. Not only that, new thermostats are going to be introduced soon that only have a range of 1 degree. This is where the issue arises, because how are you supposed to fix a cold classroom if you can barely change the temperature at all? The point of this is to make sure the price for heating/air doesn’t get too bad, however it’s clearly having a negative impact on the classroom environment and it is a problem.

The nature of this problem is the temperature being so noticeable that important things become unnoticeable. When asked if classroom temperatures were ever distracting from learning, Holly Reese said, “in short, yes. It’s hard to think and it’s hard to write when you’re shivering from being so cold in a classroom.” Cold classrooms are clearly having an effect on students here at Enochs, in their ability to think and to perform tasks like writing and other things. The previously mentioned lack of flexibility is hurting students in general but specifically those who are sensitive to colder temperatures.

So, what can be done about this? Well, the simple answer is to increase the ranges that teachers are allowed to adjust thermostats, rather than decrease it. However, due to pricing and other factors, this isn’t exactly ideal. But, this doesn’t mean it’s out of the realm of possibility either. Perhaps an increase of just a little bit in the range is in the picture, but with a higher emphasis on an adjustment in the set ranges. Whatever students believe to be most comfortable is the most important, because that’s what school is all about, and the process of learning should not be impeded by classrooms being too cold.