Kenosha Unified spends nearly $4,000,000 per year on gas, water and electricity each year. Utilities are the 3rd largest annual cost for the district after payroll and benefits. In round numbers this works out to around $180 per student just for utilities.
Heating and cooling
For Facilities services professionals building temperatures have always been a difficult area. It is a fact that people have very different ideas of what is too warm or too cold. Most people actually feel temperature differential (changes in temperature) much more than actual ambient temperature in a given space.
For the purpose of meeting code requirements, occupant comfort and energy efficiency it is necessary to set standard minimum and maximum ambient temperatures.
The District energy policy says that during heating season classroom temperatures should be maintained at 68 degrees when occupied and 55 when the building is unoccupied. While it is relatively easy to set a standard temperature, in practice it is much more difficult to accomplish. Many factors can affect the ambient temperature of spaces within a building. Factors such as the number of people within a space, temperature of surrounding spaces, air infiltration from the outside and heatingand ventilation systems can all cause problems maintaining the desired temperatures. Many rooms within the district will have a significant temperature differential from one area of the room to another. An example would be the temperature near the window being colder than in the middle of the room.
At Kenosha Unified we have instructed our building custodians that room temperatures should be measured in the middle of the room at desk level. Thermostats should be set to maintain as close to 68 degrees as possible at that point in the room. It might be necessary for the custodian to adjust the thermostat set point up or down to maintain the 68 degree temperature.
The unfortunate reality is that some rooms have poor heating or cooling. Facilities services is working diligently to fix these problem areas however, heating, ventilating and air conditioning systems can be very complex. Shortcomings in design or operation are often costly to correct. With that said, no room within Kenosha Unified should be extremely hot or cold during the heating season. Anyone who works in a non air conditioned building already knows how warm it gets in summer months so we will discuss cooling in the next installment of our newsletter. Assuming that the room is 68 degrees a simple thing like dressing warmer and reminding the students to bring a sweater or sweatshirt if they are cold can go a long way to improve the comfort in your classroom.
It is important for everyone to understand that it is against Board Policy for anyone other than the custodian or Facilities staff to tamper with or change thermostat settings. During this heating season if you feel your room is too hot or cold please contact your custodian or you can contact John Allen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Energy Star Leader Awards
Kenosha Unified School District is one of only 8 School Districts in Wisconsin to be listed as an Energy Star leader.
Owning a building that achieves top energy performance is a sign of good management, but owning a portfolio of buildings that achieves continuous improvement in energy performance demonstrates superior management and environmental leadership.
ENERGY STAR partners who demonstrate continuous improvement organization-wide, not just in individual buildings, qualify for recognition as ENERGY STAR Leaders.
Based on results from EPA's national energy performance rating system found in Portfolio Manager, ENERGY STAR Leaders recognition is provided for the following achievements: Portfolio-wide energy efficiency improvements of 10%, 20%, 30% or more on organization-wide baseline.
Energy Star Labeled Buildings
Buildings that earn the ENERGY STAR use an average of 35 percent less energy than typical buildings, and also release 35 percent less carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.
The following Kenosha Unified Schools have earned the prestigious ENERGY STAR label:
- Edward Bain School of Language and Art
- Columbus Elementary
- Educational Support Center
- Hillcrest School
- Prairie Lane Elementary
- Somers Elementary
- Stocker Elementary
- Strange Elementary
- Wilson Elementary
- Brass Community School
- Dimensions of Learning Academy
- Frank Elementary
- McKinley Elementary
- Mahone Middle
- Whittier Elementary
- Lance Middle