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Energy conservation for Lake Shore schools

Energy conservation is a major focus for the Lake Shore Central School district. This among other topics were covered at the board meeting held on Aug. 20, as the school will strive towards further improvement.

The board approved board goals for the 2013 – 14 school year. The first on the list addressed a prevalent issue in the schooling system: bullying. The school will focus on providing a safer school for students free of “discrimination, intimidation, taunting, harassment and bullying.” The board stated that it will instill high expectations for students when it comes to assessments within the district and also for New York State assessments. Their ultimate goal is to increase the graduation rate until it is 100 percent; meanwhile, they will strive towards a greater number of students achieving Regents Diplomas and Advanced Designation per graduate.

In regards to personnel, the board acknowledged and “accept with regret” the resignation of Secondary Assistant Principal Jeffrey Cervoni, effective Aug. 25. The reason for resignation being his taking principal position at the Eden Central School District.

Mark Gardner, energy specialist for the district, approached the board concerning the school’s use of energy and waste.

The program the school is utilizing, formerly known as Energy Education, is Cenergistic. The program is an energy management program that is making efforts to help reduce energy cost by coming into the district to train Gardner; he then works with custodians to tweak scheduling and improve energy management.

Gardner was observing the schools, making note of any glitches or issues that could be adding to energy waste. On off-hours he would tend to the schools; at the middle school, he noticed that although the systems were scheduled to shut down at 4 p.m. they were not due to software issues. By tending to issues such as this, the Lake Shore district has “seen a tremendous saving,” he said. From June 21 – July 21 of this year there has been a 41 percent reduction in the middle school compared to the previous year; a 21 percent reduction at the high school.

“My job is to save as much energy as possible,” he said. Originally a technology teacher at the school, he will personally be going into classes to educate students (and also faculty) about energy conservation.

They have completed their first of a four year contract with Cenergistic, which is a grant-funded program.

He made it aware to the board that the school should be aware of “lights, and leaving computers on,” to which the board responded in consensus that they will focus on being more aware of the energy being used and to what extent.

“I’ve received a lot of cooperation from everybody in the district ... we still have a ways to go, taking small steps,” he said. “It’s creating change and sometimes change is hard to do.”

In other news:

– For financial reports: the senior high school balance increased from $72,300.11 on June 30 to a balance of $78,218.04 as of July 31. For the middle school there was a decrease: the balance was $22,691 as of June 30 and then $21,352 as of July 31.

– Two requests for travel were approved by the board. The Lake Shore cheerleading team was approved to travel to Honesdale, Pa. The boys and girls varsity cross-country teams were approved to travel to Queensbury, N.Y.

– The board will attend the New York State School Board Association’s 93rd annual convention in Rochester from Oct. 24 – 26.

The next work session will be held at 6:30 p.m on Sept. 3. The next board meeting will be held at 7 p.m. on Sept. 17.

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