St. Charles schools cutting energy costs

Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 19, 2000

LEONARD GRAY / L’Observateur / February 19, 2000

LULING – St. Charles Parish public schools are well ahead of their goal to cutenergy costs systemwide, according to a progress report presented to the school board Wednesday.

At the five-year point in the 12-year contract with Seimens Building Technologies Inc., Landis Division, Janice Bordelon and Darryl Thigpen saidlast year energy consumption savings were targeted at $221,526. Instead, asavings of $239,465 was realized.

During the past five years it was hoped to save $664,578. Instead, $895,869have been saved in the life of the contract so far.

Larry Sesser, executive director of physical plant services, added that the goal is $230,000 average in two years in energy savings and that the school system is well ahead of its expected progress.

This summer and fall all fluorescent lighting will be replaced and upgraded to more energy-efficient lighting, Bordelon told the board.

A breakdown of cost savings per school is now available at the St. CharlesParish Public Library, Supt. Dr. Rodney Lafon said.In other activity, Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment Rachel Allemand and Executive Director of Restructuring and Curriculum and Instruction Felecia Gomez presented an update on education grants acquisition and announced a grand total of $4.6 million won in 1999-2000.Technology grants for upgrading classroom computers and teacher training totaled $472,881. School-to-career equipment and staff developmentreceived $187,707. Special education programs for preschool and minority-gifted received $831,594 (including one federal grant of more than $596,000).

Head Start and other early-childhood programs received $859,057.

Programs under the Improving America’s Schools Act, including more teacher hiring, improved salary and materials and literacy parent centers, received $1,565,346.

Various programs on improving student achievement, including LEAP tutoring programs, received $578,607 (notably a $241,739 state grant for mathematics resource teachers for second grade). Finally, the Union Carbide$150,000 grant for the Model Schools program rounded off the list.

With LEAP testing set for March 13-17, Lafon advised parents to have children being tested to get plenty of rest, eat well, keep to a routine, arrive at school on time, keep a positive attitude and remember the importance of the LEAP test.

Results from the March tests will be received by May 15. A retest isscheduled July 6 and 10-11, with results due back by Aug. 8 for eighth-graders and Aug. 14 for fourth-graders. The 2000-2001 school term beginsAug. 17.

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