Schools save energy. Some will lower the temperature in the classrooms in winter

Primary schools cope with the energy crisis in different ways. “Our energy costs have doubled compared to 2021. Our school is located in new premises, from the beginning we have been working with several sources of heating, e.g. we use recuperation. We have a school-wide manual for the use of spaces, the temperature control can be adjusted in each room separately, so we can plan well and regulate consumption in rooms that are not currently in use and reduce the temperature at night,” says school director Vela Kateřina Kuberová, adding that greater cost-saving measures they are not planning at the moment because they are trying to have a sustainable approach in the long term and they are not reheating the premises.

Healthy hardening

Fourteen of the thirty-three Prague schools that responded to the question about energy savings will reduce the heating by 1-2 degrees. “It is likely that we will lower the temperature in the classrooms, but I am not worried about the winter, the children warm themselves. We are a sports school, we will promote toughening up and we will focus on arguing to children that the government is not to blame for the problems, but Putin,” says Jana Churáčková, principal of ZŠ Eden, with a slight exaggeration.

They don’t worry about the pupils even in ZŠ Mendelova. “Thanks to our own boiler room, we still heat very economically. We have an insulated school. Our pupils are hardy,” says school director Martina Thumsová. According to Veronika Simona Modráčková, the deputy director of the Veselá škola primary school, frequent outdoor activities are also a solution. If the weather permits, he spends his time teaching with the pupils outside the school buildings. Alternatively, they undertake thematic excursions and organize external teaching.

Nine thousand children go to the first grades in Prague and central Bohemia after a postponement

Some schools in the Central Bohemia region are also counting on cost-saving measures. At the same time, however, they emphasize in one breath that this will in no way mean winter in the classrooms and a threat to children’s health. “We are already discussing cost-saving solutions, the classrooms will be set to 20 °C. In the corridors, we anticipate limiting the heating, but in accordance with hygiene requirements. Outside of classes, we will reduce the temperature to 14 °C,” the director of the Václav Havel Elementary School in Poděbrady, Vlastimil Špinka, enumerates the measures.

However, the schools agree that the comfort of the children and compliance with all the Ministry’s regulations are important to them. With more significant measures, they are therefore waiting for a possible amended decree on classroom temperatures.

Energy costs are rising

Heating in schools is different. In some cases, it is provided by the founder, other schools still have fixed or capped prices, so they have not been significantly affected by the increase in price. Elsewhere, he heats his own boiler room. For some schools, however, costs are rising. “Last year we paid around a quarter of a million crowns for the whole year, this year, even before the eighty percent increase in energy prices since July, we paid almost nine hundred thousand crowns,” explains the director of the Brethren Church School in Prague 7, Rostislav Konopa, who is worried , that the increase in energy prices will be reflected in the operation of educational circles after school lessons.

Energy costs also increased at the elementary school in Prague 8 in Burešova Street. Compared to last year, they paid 750,000 more so far. Other schools are talking about a projected price increase of thirty percent or even double compared to last year. In addition to heating regulation, schools replace fluorescent lamps with more energy-efficient ones, supervise the extinguishing of unused rooms or observe the economical use of kettles by employees.

Schoolchildren will travel more than before, buses and trains will be strengthened

The Poříčí nad Sázavou elementary school in Benešovské is heated with gas. The fact that all school buildings are insulated is supposed to contribute to the savings. “We continuously change light sources to low-energy ones. The cost-saving measures are aimed at the finances we have from the founder and we try to save operating money for possible energy surcharges. No one has yet increased our advances, and the bill will not be issued until September,” explained school director Radim Navrátil.

They are taken care of at the school in Kněžice in Nymburk. The village, known far beyond the borders of Nymburk, has collected numerous awards in the past for being energy self-sufficient. The energy is largely produced by the biogas station behind the village, so the locals do not have to worry about any price increases. Dramatic measures do not await the school either. “We have our own heating and do not count on reducing the temperature except for a malfunction. The costs remain,” mayor Milan Kazda laconically assessed the situation.

The article is in Czech

Tags: Schools save energy temperature classrooms winter

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