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Schools make switch to LED lights to save on energy costs in Hillsborough County

Posted at 7:04 AM, Aug 15, 2018

HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. — Schools across Hillsborough County are now getting a green makeover, a move designed to eventually save the district millions of dollars in energy costs.

Edison Elementary School in Tampa is one of 70 Hillsborough County schools that have switched over to completely LED light fixtures.

Teacher Christina Ranker remembers the old yellow, buzzing lights of her old classroom and said the new LED lights are much softer, creating a better learning environment.

"The glare is basically gone," she said. "And it's just much more workable for myself and the kids to understand what's happening in the classroom."

The switch to LED light fixtures is designed to eventually save the district $6M in energy costs.

"It's going to be incredible because then that money can be funded for other resources we need in the classroom, other technology that we need in the classroom," said Marc Gaillard, Edison Elementary Principal.

With current budget woes, the company installing the lights put the upfront costs to have everything put in. The district will then pay the company back with the money they save on energy costs.

Edison Elementary, in particular, is a model school for the program. They also received a new, energy-efficient HVAC system and will also get a solar-covered parking structure for teachers and staff. The parking structure will be built by the end of the school year and should help create more green energy to power the school, Gaillard said.

The overall goal is to have every Hillsborough County School eventually switch over to energy-efficient fixtures and appliances.