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Idaho Schools First in State To Achieve LEED Certification

Van Buren Elementary and Washington Elementary, both in the Caldwell School District in Caldwell, ID, have become the first schools in the state of Idaho to receive Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) for Schools certification from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC).

With the help of full-service building and facilities management firm McKinstry, the schools have installed the equipment and implemented the processes required to create a healthier environment for students and faculty and more energy-efficient facilities, based upon standards set by USGBC. As a result, the school buildings can now claim:

  • Improved air flow and quality;
  • Acoustical enhancements for quieter classrooms with fewer distractions;
  • Improved natural light flow;
  • More water-efficient landscaping;
  • Verified energy-efficient heating and cooling systems; and
  • Ongoing measurement and verification of energy use to optimize efficiency and cost savings.

In addition to these environmental improvements, students now have a living laboratory to learn about energy efficiency, alternative fuel sources, and ecological wisdom.

"Energy efficiency is critical to our long-term success in Caldwell," said Roger Quarles, CSD superintendent. "We are teaching the most at risk kids the importance of reducing our carbon footprint on the world in the best possible learning environment available in Idaho. We're also saving our taxpayers millions in future energy costs. These state-of-the-art buildings have high-performing features that save money in energy costs that we can put toward books and school supplies."

About the Author

Scott Aronowitz is a freelance writer based in Las Vegas. He has covered the technology, advertising, and entertainment sectors for seven years. He can be reached here.