When running a school--no matter where or what grade levels--there is far more to it than planning curricula and making sure that students attend class and are successful. Administrators and teachers must also consider certain factors such as financial resources and the ways that funds are allocated throughout the school.
Just like the normal operation of a house, store, or other building, resources need to be set aside for things like bills. Energy bills can get extremely high, especially in the summer or winter months, when the heat or air conditioning needs to be operating all the time. There are ways, however, to mitigate these costs, and you can even include your students and educate them about energy conservation at the same time.
Everyone knows that the cost of electricity, heating, cooling, and other energy bills can grow out of hand if nothing is done to conserve these forms of energy. It is important that the entire school participates in the effort to save money and energy so that everyone can also reap the benefits of a more energy-efficient school. Whether it is the teachers, administrators, staff, students, or parents, making the school as energy efficient as possible through the implementation of an energy savings plan is everyone’s responsibility.
For administrators and staff, steps can be taken to examine the areas of the school which are using the most energy resources and evaluate if those areas can be improved. Within the energy savings plan, administrators can take steps to ensure that lighting, heating, cooling, kitchen equipment, and other factors are optimized for energy efficiency. Switching from incandescent bulbs and standard fluorescents, for instance, to LEDs and compact fluorescent lights are powerful options that are a fraction of the cost. You can also take advantage of natural sunlight coming in through the windows to light classrooms and hallways or making sure that only classrooms are heated and cooled to maximize comfort rather than the hallways.
Making the energy savings plan does not have to be difficult or time-consuming. Start by making minor alterations and work your way up to larger, school-wide changes. At Watt Watchers of Texas, we have the resources and information to get your school on the right track for an effective energy savings plan that involves everyone.
Teachers can implement activities and lessons in their classrooms to help save money and energy within their schools as part of an energy savings plan as well. Have students become part of a team such as the Student Patrol Program through Watt Watchers of Texas so that they can check for simple energy-saving methods such as turning off lights when the room is not in use, recycling, and closing the doors to unused rooms. Teachers can also have lessons prepared every day to demonstrate how the students’ efforts are positively impacting their school, community, and the larger world.
Students love to see the outcomes of their actions, so participating in their school’s energy savings plan is a great way to provide benefits to the school and give the students another thing to be proud of. Giving students tasks to complete throughout the school and allowing them to have authority (even over teachers) when it comes to turning off lights or shutting doors is a great way to teach them responsibility and demonstrate the many benefits of energy efficiency. They can also work to implement some of the changes they see in their school at home to help their parents also save money on energy bills. An energy savings plan truly is a win-win for everyone!
If your school is interested in becoming more energy-efficient, contact Watt Watchers of Texas to learn more about the best ways of implementing an energy savings plan and how to get your students involved as well. Our Student Patrol Program provides everything teachers will need to have a successful program including lessons and activities for all areas of interest and all grade levels (K-12). Find out more about how Watt Watchers of Texas can help your school become energy efficient and save money on energy bills.
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Watt Watchers of Texas
204 E. Dean Keeton Street, Austin, Texas 78712