The state of Arizona's School Facilities Board, which governs all building improvements at state schools, recently established minimum facilities guidelines for all schools in Arizona. Any school that is measured against the new guidelines and exceeds them will eventually be converted from evaporative cooling systems commonly used in the region to A/C systems.
In 2002-2003, the Tucson Unified School District (TUSD) is receiving nearly $72 million in state building improvement funding, much of which is being used to help convert a sizeable number of schools to A/C. According to mechanical consultant O.J. Clayton, principal and owner of Clayton Engineering and Consulting in Tucson, A/C will eventually become the standard cooling system in most Tucson schools. "And with so many schools going to year-round schooling and public interest growing in improving students' learning environments, it's inevitable that all qualifying schools will be making the changeover," he said.