Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

Schools Are Hot, But Your Kids Better Obey The Dress Code Anyway

SMMUSD Issues press release on their new air conditioning program. Kewl!!

After deciding to start the school year in the third week of August several years ago, the school district has managed to determine that the complete lack of air conditioning in any of its classrooms might be a wee bit of a problem. June is typically a cool month in Santa Monica. August, not so much. Apparently, the number of schoolkids nodding off during a hot summer afternoon has prompted the below measures.

Dear parents and guardians,

We understand that a comfortable classroom temperature is more conducive to teaching and student learning, therefore we want to update you on the short and long term measures SMMUSD is taking to keep our classrooms as cool as possible on our warmest days.

Over the past year, we have implemented a number of cooling methods to ensure comfort in classrooms:

More than one thousand fans were distributed throughout the District over the past several years

New roller shades were installed in all of the designated "hot" rooms. Installation began after Spring Break and was completed this summer

Roller shades were installed this summer in all of the rooms at Grant, Rogers and Cabrillo where the Window, Paint and Floor (WPF) projects commenced

Roller shades will be added to all elementary classrooms over the next few years as the WPF projects are completed

Next summer, windows will be replaced or retrofitted at Rogers, Grant, Roosevelt, Webster and buildings at Malibu High School

Window replacement will continue as part of the WPF projects

new windows are double-paned and glazed to reduce glare and provide better insulation

windows that were sealed shut, painted over or broken are being repaired

The District-wide Campus Building Cooling Load and Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) System Study has been completed. The work involved: reviewing the existing facilities

multiple meetings with District and site staffpreliminary conceptual design work and cost estimating

A presentation of the Study is scheduled for the Board of Education meeting of September 1st, at which time staff expects to receive direction on next steps

We have recommended that teachers open windows upon arrival in the morning and keep classroom lights off, and minimize exerting activities.

Outdoor activities will be limited during extreme heat and after-school practices and athletic events will be cancelled, if necessary.

Teacher and staff are making sure that students have access to drinking water and encouraged to stay hydrated.

Parents are encouraged to have their students wear cool clothing to school, that is within our dress code policy.

We understand the interests of staff and parents to have cooler rooms and to also have systems that are eco-friendly and energy efficient to help preserve our natural resources, while ensuring an optimal student learning environment. We continue to work all year to accomplish these goals.

Thank you.


Dr. Chris King and Dr. Sylvia Rousseau, Co-Interim Superintendents Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District


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