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District's energy conservation saves more than $1 million in 19 months
For the Reporter
The Kent School District has achieved $1.3 million in cost savings in 19 months since forming a strategic alliance with Cenergistic, a national energy conservation company.
Cenergistic will present its Energy Excellence Award to the district during the school board meeting at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 9, at the KSD Administration Building, 12033 SE 256th St.
"Kent School District has achieved success by consistently implementing the organizational behavior-based approach to energy conservation and maintaining productive efforts at all levels of the organization," said Dr. William S. Spears, Chairman and Founder of Cenergistic. "The superintendent and board, along with other administration, faculty, and staff members are to be commended for clearly fulfilling their commitment to being good stewards of the taxpayers' money and the environment."
Superintendent Edward Lee Vargas said, "We are committed to energy savings not only as conscientious stewards of our environment but also in order to direct our resources toward educational needs. Maximizing resources is one of the seven key strategic goals the School Board set forth in 2010."
As part of the program, Energy Specialists Kim Wilbur and Sean Kelly track energy consumption — including electricity, water, sewer, natural gas, and fuel oil — using energy-accounting software. They compare current energy use to a baseline period and calculate the amount of energy that would have been used had conservation and management practices not been implemented. By tracking consumption and analyzing energy use, they quickly identify and correct areas that need immediate attention.
Kent School District celebrated the kickoff of a new partnership with Equal Opportunity Schools (EOS) on Sept. 19. Last spring EOS selected KSD for a Global Impact Award grant from Google. Based on KSD's reputation for college readiness pathways, strong school leadership and a focus on equity and quality, EOS chose KSD to be a partner with them in providing better access to advanced learning programs, such as Advanced Placement (AP) courses, to under-represented student groups in the district, including racial minorities and low-income students. As part of the understanding of the award, KSD will match the grant amount of $54,000 to fund the joint project with EOS. The district will get technical assistance to implement programming and access to the grant money.