UPDATE(1/7/16 - 12:49pm)
Classroom temperatures have returned to normal. Work continues in media center and cafeteria to get heat circulating.
Superintendent George wrote a follow up note to the Herald: As previously reported, the district’s contractors and facilities staff have been focused on working to solve the operational issues with the heating systems at High School North. As of today, all of the classrooms and the gyms at High School North have been restored to comfortable temperatures in the high 60’s range or above. We are still addressing malfunctioning heating system equipment for the cafeteria, media center and auditorium. We expect these units to be functioning fully in the next few days.
MIDDLETOWN, NJ - Students and staff returning to Middletown High School North this week after the Winter break found several classrooms too cold to use.
Some classrooms at Middletown High School North are so cold that students and teachers have been shuffled into other spaces throughout the day while the contractors try to solve the heating system problems.
Superintendent Dr. William O. George III sent a letter to the school community on Wednesday explaining the problem and the steps the school district is taking to rectify the heating issue.
Dear High School North School Community,
Since the return from winter recess, we unfortunately have been experiencing issues with our heating system. Certain areas of the building are much colder than desired. Over the past two days, I have visited every room in the building to assess the conditions. Our administrators and facilities staff have been working diligently with our contractors and architect to determine the best way to solve these problems. As soon as the heating issues were identified, we began to take steps to improve climate conditions. We will continue to make additional progress as quickly as possible.
To further explain, our heating system was shut down and pumps were drained over the winter recess to complete boiler upgrades. When the system returned online Saturday, we noted that consistent heat was not being supplied to the majority of classrooms. This was caused by screens clogged with sediment, computerized controls that needed adjustments, and frozen rooftop units. Our Facilities Department, contractors, and architect have been working on the system for the last three days. As a result, notable improvement has been seen as of this afternoon. Currently, a significant number of classrooms have temperatures in the upper 60’s and 70’s.
Over the last three days, the district has been monitoring the temperature in every room, each period. Throughout the day, administrators identified all available, adequately heated rooms and reassigned students as needed. This practice will continue until all rooms are properly heated.
I understand the concerns of the students, parents and staff, and appreciate your patience as we work through these challenges. Please be assured that the district values the comfort of each student and staff member. It is also important to note that the district is not in violation of statutory codes or district policy. The district’s administration will continue to place the highest priority on rectifying this problem.
William O. George III, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools