Conservation Efforts Support Classroom Instruction

energy conservationKPBSD's on-going commitment to reduce energy costs and protect the environment netted a $297,411 energy savings for KPBSD during the 2009-2010 school year. The KPBSD Energy Incentive Program, now in its third school year, awards 25% of each school's total energy savings to each school according to the amount of energy each school saved during the prior school year. "I continue to be impressed by the good conservation efforts of our schools. The savings in energy costs each year reflect our conscientious approach toward spending public dollars", said Dr. Steve Atwater, KPBSD Superintendent.

Tustumena Principal Bob VanDerWege took that initiative to heart and developed a program to advance the District's initiative one step further. Each month he completes two after school random walk-through visits of classrooms. He checks to see if items have been left turned on overnight and assigns point values: a computer is 3 points, a monitor is 2 points and all other electronic devices are 1 point. After each check he creates a shared spreadsheet that specifies the results of each classroom in the building. He then shares that spreadsheet online utilizing Google Docs.

At the end of the month, Principal VanDerWege awards classrooms with the lowest point values a portion of the school's energy savings. Each classroom teacher can decide how to spend their award to improve classroom instruction. Examples include a special field trip or new classroom resources. "When I started the program last year the school accumulated 20 points on a walk-thru. Now it's very rare to find any classrooms with electrical items left on after hours. It's a team effort. Everyone is helping each other to save energy and earn money for their classroom," said VanDerWege.