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Garnet Valley School District

Logo for Garnet Valley School District Glen Mills, Pennsylvania
10% Improvement (2011)
30% Improvement (2013)

Garnet Valley School District is located in Delaware County Pennsylvania, approximately 20 miles southwest of Philadelphia.  The school district serves students from Bethel Township, Concord Township, and the Borough of Chester Heights, all viewed as civic-minded and rapidly growing communities. Recognized as one of the best school districts in Pennsylvania, the district educates approximately 4,800 students each year in its five schools with the highest graduation rate in the county. Garnet Valley considers energy efficiency an important part of its efforts toward sustainability, but also a key component in its science and mathematics curriculum. Each school has an active Environmental Club, involving its members in recycling and energy conservation projects. In the spring of 2011 the clubs, along with the districts Green Committee, sponsored a district-wide contest for recycling and energy conservation. Each school exceeded its targets and resulted in the districts first Energy Star rated building.

By the end of 2012, three of the districts five schools had achieved the Energy Star. Previous investments in HVAC controls, lighting, and energy education saved 3.75 million kWh and 95,000 ccf of natural gas, a reduction of more than 30% from the baseline year. This saved the district in excess of $500,000 and resulted in a reduction of more than 2300 metric tons of greenhouse gas. With the support of the School Board and Superintendent, the school district recently accepted a proposal for a large scale energy conservation project. The project calls for the installation of high-efficiency chillers, updated and expanded HVAC controls, energy efficient lighting, variable speed drives and other mechanical improvements. There is also a comprehensive Energy Education component involving a local engineering firm that specializes in the K-12 market. Using data from the Energy Star portal, the district plans to further incorporate energy efficiency and environmental stewardship into its curriculum. By building on the success of its energy conservation work from the last two school years, the district hopes to reduce its energy use by another 40%.