Labor will air condition kids’ classrooms

Liberal-Nationals will air condition corporate boxes

Opposition Leader Luke Foley today announced a Labor government will take back $300 million from the Berejiklian Government’s multi-billion dollar Sydney stadium splurge – to provide air conditioning for the State’s public schools.

Mr Foley was in Penrith today for the launch of Labor’s Cool Schools policy which will also guarantee air conditioning in all new schools built under Labor.

The $300 million investment is expected to air condition 600 schools – and create thousands of cooler classrooms. Schools in regional NSW and Western Sydney will be among the first to benefit.

Mr Foley said Labor will air condition childrens’ classrooms while the Liberal-Nationals government will air condition the corporate boxes.

Despite Penrith being the hottest place on earth in January, the Berejiklian Government’s policy does not guarantee air conditioning for Penrith schools.

Under Labor’s Cool Schools, air conditioning will be guaranteed for all schools in Penrith and thousands of classrooms across Western Sydney and regional NSW

The Berejiklian Government only provides full “air cooling” to schools with mean maximum January temperatures of 33 degrees Celsius or above. This policy provides full air cooling to less than 200 schools.

Under Gladys Berejiklian even new schools are being built without air conditioning, including the recently-opened Wentworth Point Public School.

Labor will immediately conduct an audit of the state’s 2200 primary and secondary schools to give priority to schools with the hottest temperatures.

The costs of running air conditioning will be partially offset by Labor’s commitment to solar panels on school roofs.

Labor’s Cool Schools policy will be a welcome relief to students who regularly suffer through high temperatures that disrupt learning.

Cool Schools honours Labor’s commitment to put schools and hospitals before stadiums.

Quotes attributable to NSW Opposition Leader Luke Foley

“For the first time thousands of children will get air conditioning in their classrooms.  

‘We will ensure every new school we build has air-conditioning - the day it opens.”

“Labor believes it’s more important to air condition classrooms where our children learn than corporate boxes in Sydney stadiums.

Quotes attributable to the Shadow Minister for Education Jihad Dib 

“Students will always struggle in a sweltering classroom - they are easily distracted, fatigued and unable to achieve learning outcomes.

"A world class education system provides exceptional learning conditions. Our students and school communities have a right to expect this level of commitment from their government.”

‘Air conditioning is crucial in areas which experience hot and humid temperatures. Excessively hot classrooms impact the teacher’s ability to effectively provide the best instruction to their class.”

“This policy is an absolute gamechanger”



NSW Labor will:

  • Divert $300 million from the Sydney stadium splurge to roll out Cool Schools – air conditioning to NSW Government schools. This is expected to air condition 600 schools – and create thousands of cooler classrooms;
  • Provide air conditioning systems, installation, and, as necessary, solar panels and an electrical upgrade;
  • Ensure every new school built under Labor will have air-conditioning from the day it opens;
  • Conduct an audit to determine the needs of each school;
  • Prioritise schools in the hottest areas first – schools in Western Sydney, parts of the North Coast and Upper Hunter will be among the first to receive air conditioning;
  • Utilise solar panels at schools to help offset the running cost to each school; and
  • Task School Infrastructure NSW with the delivery of school air conditioning to ensure the efficient and quality delivery of the program.