The students at Missoula's Lewis and Clark elementary school will be a lot warmer this coming winter, after a new boiler, valued at nearly $250,000 is installed this week.

MCPS Director of Operations and Maintenance Scott Reed said that the new boiler is replacing the current model, which is 56 years-old.

"The current boiler experienced a major failure at the end of last winter, and our insurance company would no longer cover the repair costs of such an old unit," Reed said. "We put in for a grant from the Quality Schools Program through the Montana Department of Commerce and we got the money to replace it."

Reed said the new boiler is much more efficient.

"This is a $250,000 replacement boiler," Reed said. "It's a low-pressure steam boiler, and the engineers are estimating that the new unit will be 30 to 40% more efficient than the old boiler. The installation is going on as we speak, and we hope to be completed by the end of this month, so that when the new school years starts, we'll be ready to go."

MCPS Director of Operations and Maintenance Scott Reed