…𝒂 𝒃𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒕𝒉 𝒐𝒇 𝒇𝒓𝒆𝒔𝒉 𝒂𝒊𝒓 𝒇𝒐𝒓 𝒆𝒅𝒖𝒄𝒂𝒕𝒊𝒐𝒏 𝒂𝒔 𝒊𝒏𝒏𝒐𝒗𝒂𝒕𝒊𝒗𝒆 𝒔𝒐𝒍𝒖𝒕𝒊𝒐𝒏 𝒃𝒆𝒂𝒕𝒔 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒔𝒘𝒆𝒍𝒕𝒆𝒓𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒄𝒉𝒂𝒍𝒍𝒆𝒏𝒈𝒆𝒔
In an effort to provide access to quality education, the Nichula Gewog has installed air conditioning units at Nichula Primary School, located in Lhamoidzingkha, a remote region in Dagana. This move aims to create a more conducive learning environment for both students and teachers at the school.
Until last year, Nichula Primary School had not been designated as a primary school; it was established in 2008 and was upgraded to primary status just last year. Situated in a location where climatic conditions require careful consideration, Nichula Primary School’s geographical setting necessitates air conditioning. With average summer temperatures reaching 34 degrees Celsius and occasionally soaring to 38 degrees, the demand for air conditioning was indeed pressing. Responding to this need, the gewog administration has provided the school with three air conditioning units.
The proposal for the installation of air conditioners was presented during the Gewog Tshongdu by the Officiating Principal, who is also the school’s representative. The proposal was met with swift action, leading to the timely installation of air conditioning facilities.
Dawa, the Officiating Principal of Nichula Primary School, highlighted the significant impact of air conditioning on the learning environment. “The absence of air conditioning significantly disrupts the students’ learning process, particularly during classes held after lunch. The intense heat experienced here often leaves students feeling lethargic and unmotivated. With the introduction of air conditioning, a transformation has occurred, illuminating the path of learning for our students.” The principal attributed the provision of air conditioning to the unwavering support of the Nichula Gewog Administration, led by the Gewog Thrizin and Gup. Their steadfast commitment to the school’s welfare has been evident through their provision of air conditioning units. While these units have been installed in a selected number of classrooms, the demand for more units remains. Dawa stated that every facet of the school’s activities has received backing from the Gewog, encompassing essentials such as furniture, air conditioning, and even the construction of a modern four-unit classroom structure.
The principal also emphasized the positive impact of having air conditioning in the classrooms. He believes that comfortable classrooms will contribute to improved concentration and academic performance among students.
Nima Wangchuk Sherpa, the gup of Nichula Gewog said, “AC will benefit both students and teachers. The unbearable summer heat with high humidity impedes a conducive environment. The fan does not help much; basically it rotates and generates lots of noise pollution. With those fans, teachers had to shout on top of their lungs, and at the end of the day they were fully exhausted. It can be one of the many reasons for teachers’ attrition from the southern belt.
Furthermore, with extreme heat students become lethargic, dehydrated and couldn’t concentrate during the day’s lesson. With AC in class, teachers can teach students with ample energy (no noise pollution) and in much cooler temperatures. Students will enjoy learning and sitting in the classes. Nichula PS is seen with lots of improvement in terms of facilities, its structures and we see students are increasing yearly. Gewog will always remain supportive.”
He added, “AC was purchased at a quotation rate, for which we incurred 0.174M for 3 numbers (cooling capacity 2 tons each). In the previous year few were installed which were centrally procured. For Nichula PS, AC is installed in most of the classroom except in IT lap which the Gewog will procure in this FY.”
With the installation of air conditioning units in the classrooms, the school now boasts a cool and refreshing atmosphere, creating a conducive environment for teaching and learning. This development is a significant milestone for the school’s administration, teachers, and students alike.
The teachers at Nichula Primary School also expressed their excitement about the new addition. Tandin Dorji, the Dzongkha teacher, said, “Compared to past years, I enjoy teaching because I have extra energy to teach with a moderate temperature in the class. It has made a vast difference in academic achievement as well. We get better outcomes during our weekly test results too.”
Furthermore, the students also shared their excitement about the air conditioning units. Arpan Rai, a fifth-grade student, said, “We don’t have to struggle anymore in the heat for our studies.”
As the academic year progresses, it is expected that the comfortable learning environment created by the air conditioning units will have a positive impact on students’ achievements, further motivating the school’s administration and teachers to continue providing the best educational experience for their students.
The success of this project has sparked discussions about the possibility of implementing similar initiatives in other remote schools across the country. Nichula Gewog is currently exploring various funding options to turn this vision into a reality, ensuring that all students and teachers in Bhutan have access to a comfortable learning environment, regardless of their geographical location.
This development in the educational infrastructure of Nichula Primary School serves as an example of the nation’s progress towards educational equity and is a source of inspiration for other educational institutions striving to create optimal learning environments for their students.