“It” is the TVA Green Schools Program.
The Green Schools Program, in partnership with local power distributors and the Alliance to Save Energy, provides schools with tools and support to achieve cost savings through energy conservation.
The program was piloted last year in the Shelby, Knoxville and Washington County school systems. Because of its success the TVA extended the program to nine Bradley County and Cleveland City schools: Taylor, Hopewell and E.L. Ross elementary schools; Ocoee, Lake Forest and Cleveland middle schools; and Bradley Central, Walker Valley and Cleveland high schools.
“The school systems here in Bradley County and Cleveland were very enthusiastic early on about participating in this program,” said Megan Campion, project manager with the Alliance to Save Energy.
On Thursday, Campion and Sarah McLaughlin, local project leader for the Green Schools Program, visited students at Ocoee Middle School to kick off the program.
About 10 seventh-grade students and two teachers were given diagnostic tools to evaluate lighting levels and electrical outlet plug levels, and to gauge room/appliance temperatures throughout the school.
During the audit, students discovered empty classrooms with the lights left on and equipment such as Promethean boards (an interactive white board) and projectors on without being used. Students also discovered lamps using incandescent bulbs and room temperatures either above or below the suggested temperature of 71.
“All of these things can be identified as energy waste. We want to give the students these tools to help them identify waste and then help them determine solutions in eliminating the waste,” said McLaughlin.
According to the McLaughlin, previous school systems who adopted the program saw a overall cost savings of 5 to 15 percent within the first year.
Parents can also rest-assured at knowing their child’s participation in the program and its activities are aligned with the Tennessee State Standard and designed to teach science and math concepts in a hands-on way that is fun and exciting.
For further information about the TVA Green Schools Program, contact McLaughlin at firstname.lastname@example.org.