County Central United School District in Indiana educates 4,000 students on a
year-round teaching schedule in buildings representing approximately 835,000
square feet of floor space. The district's mission is to assist each student in
maximizing his or her potential as a self-directed, lifelong learner and a responsible,
caring citizen. A partner of the ENERGY STAR program since 2008, DeKalb County
Central United School District views energy efficiency as an important
opportunity to reduce operating costs so unspent funds can be redirected back
to supporting programs for students. In addition to increasing energy
efficiency, avoiding unnecessary expenditures for energy, and protecting the
environment, the district's energy management program has provided an
opportunity to educate students, employees, and the community about the
environmental benefits of energy efficiency.
DeKalb County Central United School District has been recognized as an ENERGY STAR Top Performer for achieving an average portfolio-wide energy performance score of 88. In 2010, the district was recognized as an ENERGY STAR Leader for improving energy efficiency by more than 50 percent compared to a 2004 baseline. All seven of the district's buildings have earned the ENERGY STAR for superior energy performance. The district has realized an average cost avoidance of approximately of $716,000 per year over a seven-year period, enabling the district to retain staff members and programs, provide funding for libraries and teacher supplies, aid in increasing staff member compensation, and make improvements to district facilities. The district's success in improving energy efficiency began with a commitment by the board of education and the superintendent of schools, who appointed an energy manager to implement the energy management process developed by Energy Education, Inc. This program involves every staff member making changes in the way they use energy, such as shutting off lights and computers when not in use. The energy manager ensures all equipment is operating as intended, and supervises ventilation rates, periods of occupancy, humidity, and transition to unoccupied buildings. The energy manager also works to preserve comfortable classroom environments and maintain district classroom temperature guidelines, circulation pumps, and heating and air conditioning systems, among other energy efficiency measures. Since its 2004 baseline, the district has prevented the emissions of more than 4,550 metric tons of carbon dioxide, which is equivalent to the carbon sequestered by more than 117,800 tree seedlings planted and grown for 10 years.