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FCPS Get2Green landscape with people biking and walking on grass.

Young girl with light bulb science fair project.Tips for Conserving Energy at Your School

All of us play a part in reducing energy use in the buildings we use.

Here are some ways you can help reduce energy use at school:


  • Communicate with your school community about your energy saving efforts through morning announcements, newsletters, and social media.  Getting your whole community on board is key to successfully saving energy.


  • Post reminders around your school.  Use the posters and cards to post reminders about unplugging devices, turning off lights, and other energy saving actions around your school.


  • Take the life out of energy vampires by unplugging.  Energy vampires are devices that suck up energy when plugged in, even when the device isn’t in use, is turned off, or is fully charged.  SMART boards, televisions, computers, microwaves, and chargers are some common energy vampires.  You can make vanquishing energy vampires even easier by plugging everything into a power strip, then switching the power strip off when you leave at the end of the day.  It’s easy to vanquish those energy vampires!

  • Turn off the lights when you leave a room.  Lighting is a big energy use, so turning off lights in empty rooms can add up to big savings.  Even if your lights will go off with a motion sensor, you can flip them off yourself before leaving the room to maximize energy savings.  There’s a reason the light switch is next to the door!


  • Daylight your classroom by turning off the lights and opening up window blinds.  If you don’t have enough light from the windows, try turning on only some of the classroom lights.


  • Let your window blinds work for you.  On warm days, keep sunlight from heating the room by lowering the blinds and tilting them toward the ceiling so you can still get some natural light.  On cool days, open your blinds to let in lots of light and let the sun help keep the room warm.


  • Adjust your computer monitor settings.  Set your computer monitor to the FCPS Power Saver plan to save energy.  Make sure your monitor isn’t using a screensaver – they use more energy than an idle computer would.


  • Keep vents clear.  Keep unit ventilators clear of obstructions.  While these units make convenient shelves, blocked vents cannot operate efficiently, which wastes energy and makes it difficult for rooms to be heated or cooled to a comfortable level.


  • Close doors and windows when the air conditioning or heat is running.  Keep the air conditioned or heated air in the classroom by keeping those doors and windows closed.


  • Conduct an audit with students to identify opportunities to save energy. 
    We recommend using the National Wildlife Federation’s Cool Schools Challenge.  Completing an energy audit also gets you one step closer to a Green Flag through the Eco-Schools USA program (a Green Flag requires you to address three pathways, one of which must be energy).


  • Find a leak or see something that needs fixing?  Have someone in your front office submit a work order to get it fixed.


Have more ideas for easy ways to save energy at your school?  Let us know at [email protected]!