Solanco School District is located in the southern portion of Lancaster County in the rolling hills of south-central Pennsylvania. The name "Solanco" is an abbreviation of Southern Lancaster County, the territory covered by the school district. Four elementary schools serve students in kindergarten through fifth grade, two middle schools house grades six through eight, and one high school holds grades nine through 12. Solanco School District houses more than 630,000 square feet of space and serves 3,739 students. The district's mission is to develop responsible citizens and lifelong learners by providing opportunities to maximize student academic performance in a safe and secure environment. As part of the district's dedication to developing responsible citizens, Solanco School District views energy efficiency as both an important opportunity to teach students about environmental protection, as well as a way to reduce operating costs. The district strives to conserve energy to maximize the funds available for instructional programs and support services, and to educate every student and employee about the environmental benefits of energy efficiency. An ENERGY STAR partner since 2006, Solanco School District has used ENERGY STAR tools and resources to help it meet its energy conservation goals and ensure that its students are learning to be good stewards of the environment.
Solanco School District has earned recognition from EPA as an ENERGY STAR Leader for improving its buildings' energy efficiency by more than 10 percent and has also received recognition as a Top Performer for achieving an average ENERGY STAR score of 83 across its building portfolio. This improvement has resulted in significant savings of more than $92,000 annually and the elimination of nearly 450 metric tons of greenhouse gases from the environment, equivalent to the annual emissions from almost 90 cars or planting 95 acres of trees. All six of the district's schools have also earned the ENERGY STAR for superior energy performance. The following are a few of the steps Solanco School District has taken to successfully reduce its energy consumption. First, the district tracks energy consumption at each of its schools. Each month, all schools receive a report of their energy consumption, and the report is compared with reports from previous months and years. If any significant increase in energy usage is identified, the district will use the Pennsylvania Power and Light Company website to track the district power use by the hour, enabling the district to identify the cause of any increases. Solanco School District has also upgraded its HVAC occupied and unoccupied control system and upgraded its 60 hp chill water pumps to include variable frequency drives (VFDs). Occupancy sensors have been installed in several of the schools. HID fixtures have been replaced with more efficient T8 florescent fixtures, and T12 florescent fixtures have been replaced with efficient T8 fixtures. Lastly, the district has established limits for both heating and cooling temperatures, while maintaining a comfortable learning environment.