I’m not sure about your school, but in mine all the wings were on individual thermostats. You can talk with other teachers on your wing and make sure you set the temperature a little cooler during winter months and a little warmer during summer months. Also, always make sure to close the doors when you’re having class or not in the room, its the same concept as leaving your front door open when you aren’t home. Try to switch to appliances that use batteries rather than being plugged in. Even leaving things plugged in takes energy, whether its on or off. You can make it a duty for the kids to make sure batteries are charged and if they do, give them a little reward. A couple of websites I found are specifically for teachers trying to help their school become more eco-friendly. Hope this helps!
One way to help save energy is to turn the thermostat slightly up in the warmer months and slightly down in the winter months. This should be resonable since most people wear sweaters in the winter and t-shirts in the summer. You could also try to assess the energy costs used for preparing school lunches. Perhaps they could serve more fresh items rather than cooked items to save on electricity. Other than that, you could lobby to shorten the school day, make 4 long days and a 3-day weekend or shorten the school year (but that might not get very far).
Good luck on your efforts!
Many schools have large flat roofs, this can be an ideal location for placement of photovoltaic cells, or solar panels. This is an expensive initial investment, yet it can not only reduce consumption of fossil fuel derived electricity, but will result in an eventual income as the school system sells unused electricity back to the grid.
Kyocera claims that a $180,000 investment in a commercial PV system in Massachusetts will net $370,000 over the next 25 years, doubling the initial investment.
At my high school, we had heating schedules for the thermostats, but they couldn’t be set individually, so we wasted a lot of energy when windows were left open. My college, the University of Denver has is much better with their efficiency. Our new Law School building uses low flow technologies in all their toilets and the whole building has motion sensor lights, which saves energy when rooms are empty. Light sensors are a great way to save energy because even though turning off the lights altogether is best, it is hard to regulate and is easy to forget.
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