KETTERING, Ohio (WDTN) – The school district here is flipping the switch on energy efficiency. Tuesday, the Dayton Power and Light company recognized Kettering City Schools’ commitment to energy conservation with a $536,241 rebate.
DP&L and Kettering City Schools have been working together for more than 3 years to identify problems with the district’s energy usage, namely outdated, inefficient lighting in buildings. A recent initiative replaced 25,000 light fixtures across the district and installed sensors to adjust overhead lighting based on the amount of natural lighting present.
Tuesday, district leaders and DP&L executives toured Fairmont High School to see the changes and the power company marked Kettering’s efforts by presenting a giant rebate check to district superintendent Scott Inskeep.
DP&L CEO Tom Raga said other customers can learn from Kettering City Schools’ progress.
“At DP&L we believe energy efficiency is part of our future,” Raga said. “So making sure that everybody knows that they can save money by moving to a more efficient lifestyle is something we do.”
The improvements from the project will save the district an estimated $200,000 and 1,236,000 kilowatt hours annually.
Building and grounds supervisor Phil Hacker said the difference is visually noticeable, as well.
“The quality of the lighting has improved, the efficiency of the lighting has improved, the cost to power the light has certainly improved,” Hacker said.
More natural light and updated light fixtures are also creating a secondary benefit for special education students. Hacker told a tour group Tuesday the LED replacement lights don’t generate the same kind of hum as fluorescent lighting, which can irritate and distract children on the autism spectrum.
District leaders and DP&L representatives said Tuesday they were impressed Kettering City Schools has become a leader in energy conservation. The district praised its partnership with the power company and said savings and rebates will be re-invested in the schools and in turn maximize the community’s dollars.
Hacker said, “It allows us to use those resources more wisely and be good stewards of what the taxpayers have entrusted us with.”
DP&L rebates awarded to Kettering Public Schools for energy efficiency now total $650,000.