Governors play an important part in making the decisions in a school such as investing in energy efficiency measures like LED lighting and solar PV. So, we thought it would be good to share with you how a governor involved in one of our projects found the experience.
Clare is a Governor and a parent at the small rural school in Yorkshire.
Funding the project
Like most schools, the investment into making energy efficiency improvements has always been a barrier for us. We didn’t have the funds available to pay for improvements unless the local authority could offer funding support. We weren’t aware of any financial mechanisms available to us until we spoke with Save Energy 2 Day.
Save Energy 2 Day made the financing seem so easy as they did a full quote based on a physical survey of our buildings, so they knew how to determine the most cost-effective solution and the specification we needed. They also explored what could help improve the lighting in the classrooms and other rooms based on their use. They calculated the savings that we could achieve using our energy bills and usage pattern, then presented us with a detailed calculation that allowed us to see the impact the lighting upgrade could have on our bills.
They talked us through the Salix funding and explained how there wouldn’t be an upfront cost and how the energy savings achieved would pay back the Salix loan. This meant that we could benefit from the lighting upgrade and we could still achieve some savings such as maintenance costs whilst paying the loan. And when the loan was repaid we would benefit from the full savings. At this point, it was clear that it was a no-brainer, and we would be foolish not to proceed.
They also provided support in applying for Salix funding and ensured that our application would be successful through their experience of meeting the criteria. This assistance was invaluable to us as we don’t have the capacity within the school to complete applications and their guidance made it easy.
And as energy prices continue to rise, anything we could do to reduce the school’s consumption was a good thing and LED lighting offered such a great saving and would continue to so into the future, as well as cut our carbon footprint.
The impact on the school
Putting the financial savings aside, there were many other benefits to the school that we began to find out for ourselves after the installation took place.
The classroom environment was visibly improved with the lighting making the rooms seem warmer, less glaring and much kinder on the eyes when looking at the whiteboards and interactive screens. I can recall a time during the winter that we held a governor meeting in my daughter’s classroom and how harsh the light was on my eyes.
The feedback from staff has been very positive too as it can make such a difference to the areas that they work and teach in.
Recommendations to other governors
I would advise any school that needs a lighting upgrade not to wait as the savings can be much greater than you think, and the Salix funding means that you won’t even be out of pocket!
The Save Energy 2 Day team conducted the work during the school holidays, so it didn’t disrupt lessons and their work was to a high standard. But the thing that was most important to us was that they supported us through the Salix application and made it easy to see the savings from the lighting upgrade and fund the costs.