Release: Solar in School Funding for Vermont

Ten Vermont Schools in Line for $500,000 from Sanders’ Solar in Schools Grants 
BURLINGTON, January 15 – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) announced today that 10 Vermont public schools submitted winning proposals for solar energy projects and are in line for federal grants of $50,000 each.

“As our state and country move away from fossil fuels toward energy independence, young people are the ones with the most at stake in making smarter choices about alternative, renewable sources of energy,” Sanders said. “I’ve been very impressed by the great interest in this project shown by schools throughout the state.  The projects at the 10 Vermont schools that were selected will help students and the people in their communities learn more about solar energy and smart ways to get to a greener future.” 

The schools were selected by a state panel put together by the State Department of Education from entries submitted as part of a statewide competition. The winning proposals will be submitted to the U.S. Department of Energy for final approval. The 10 Vermont schools are:

•    The Edge Academy / Essex Middle School in Essex Junction.
•    Woodstock Union Middle/High School in Woodstock.
•    Bradford Elementary School in Bradford
•    South Royalton School in South Royalton
•    Crossett Brook Middle School in Duxbury
•    Bellows Free Academy in St. Albans
•    Sustainability Academy at Lawrence Barnes in Burlington
•    Essex Community Education Center in Essex Junction
•    Folsom Education and Community Center in South Hero
•    Hazen Union School in Hardwick

The funding, secured by Sanders in a federal spending bill, will be used to purchase small-scale solar photovoltaic installations which will be for educational purposes. Schools were encouraged to submit creative proposals that engaged as many students as possible in developing hands-on scientific, technical, and other curricula involving the solar equipment.

“This program is a major step forward in moving our state toward a greener economy which relies more and more on sustainable energy,” Sanders said.

Senator Sanders is chairman of the Green Jobs and the New Economy Subcommittee of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.  He is also the only member of the Senate majority to serve on both the energy and environment committees.