Cooling system plan hits snag

A promising solution for the lack of air conditioning at the junior high and Lowry High has hit a snag.

Humboldt County School District has worked to install air conditioning systems in the schools, starting with the elementaries. After the completion of summer 2017’s construction projects, only Winnemucca Junior High and Lowry High remain without complete cooling in the works.

As a temporary compromise, Superintendent Dave Jensen and project manager Mike Mitchell proposed testing out an evaporative cooling system at Winnemucca Junior High over the 2018-2019 school year.

While the district plans to eventually install AC in all of the schools, Jensen said, the district had to work within the limits of funding. Evaporative cooling provided a “more immediate, cheaper alternative” while the district looked for long-term solutions.

The board approved the project to move forward. Initial inspection at the junior high revealed structural and code conflicts that might stop the project in its tracks. If that happens, the district will head back to the drawing board.

Jensen said he intends to propose a study into other cooling options at a future school board meeting. Meanwhile, the board is also looking into possible funding options.