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Hannibal Courier - Post - Hannibal, MO
  • Energy conservation program paying off for school district

  • The mission of the Hannibal public school district’s energy program is to conserve energy and preserve dollars for education. According to figures presented during Wednesday night’s Board of Education meeting, that objective is being realized in a major way.
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  • The mission of the Hannibal public school district’s energy program is to conserve energy and preserve dollars for education. According to figures presented during Wednesday night’s Board of Education meeting, that objective is being realized in a major way.
    Between April 2013 and October 2013 energy conservation saved the school district $204,000, according to Allen Gottman, district maintenance director and energy specialist. Since the program was launched in 2011 the estimated savings now stands at over $560,000.
    As for this winter, Gottman reports that while the program is “in the black,” some savings have been negated by stretches of bitter cold.
    Among the ways the district saves on its energy usage is by coordinating HVAC and lighting to run only at times when the facility is in use, eliminating energy waste, and by auditing utility bills and meters for errors and overcharges.
    The greatest “cost avoidance” has been seen at the high school where over $152,000 has been saved. Also topping $100,000 in cost savings were the middle school ($111,295) and Veterans Elementary School ($106,466).
    Gottman stressed that the savings have been the result of a team effort.
    “The staff has bought into this big time,” he said. “The custodians, teachers and administrators are all doing what they can.”
    In other business:
    • Rich Stilley, business manager, cited maintenance personnel for their ice and snow removal work.
    • It was noted that heating issues have been a “nuisance” this winter. A new heat exchanger was recently installed at Veterans Elementary. While some cool rooms have been reported in the district, Stilley reported that overall a warm environment has been provided students, faculty and staff.
    • The Food Service Department recently underwent its first administrative review in seven years. While a final report has not been seen, Stilley reported the evaluators departed “pleased with everything they saw.”
    • The number of families receiving free meals is growing. In January, 63.57 percent of students were eligible for free and reduced rates.
    • The district received a 97 percent rating during its annual inspection of buses which was completed earlier this month by the Missouri State Highway Patrol. The lone bus not passing had already been selected to be removed from the fleet as part of the Emission Reduction Act State Clean Diesel Program. A $20,000 grant received earlier this year through the program will be applied to the purchase of one of three new buses.
    • The district-wide attendance percentage in January was 93.72 percent. It was the first month this school year when attendance did not exceed the attendance level of the previous school year. The attendance level in 2012-13 for January was 93.74 percent.
    Page 2 of 2 - The only building where attendance was up in January was the high school.
    • Program evaluations for Foods Services and the Elementary Gifted Program were provided. The performance level of both were rated “above average.”
    • The Board heard from Brooke Kelly, the principal at Veterans Elementary. She presented a video highlighting what’s going on at the school. She also introduced some of the school’s “Dynamite Leaders.”
    • The Board was advised about the Booster Club’s restructuring and its plans to support all Hannibal Pirate activities through an advertising campaign.
    • Approval was given an Early Separation Agreement.
    • A proposed calendar for the 2014-15 school year was approved by the Board. Classes would begin Aug. 19, two days earlier than this school year. Winter recess would extend from Dec. 22 through Jan. 2. Spring break would run from April 2 through April 6. The school year would wrap up May 22.
    • It was reported that no bids were received for the 2014 Buildings Trade house. The bid deadline was Wednesday.
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