FAQ

How and when will my school receive Utility Conservation Program money?

There are three interconnected Utility Conservation Programs:

  1. Shared Savings Awards
  2. Green Team Funding
  3. Conservation Champions

Winning schools will automatically receive Shared Savings Award money in the Fall. Results are based on utility use from the previous year. All schools receive a Shared Savings packet and letter, and are notified by email. Green Team Funding is awarded based on applications submitted by each school. Winning teams are notified by letter or email and funds are transferred every year in the Winter. Conservation Champion Awards are provided based upon a random drawing from those schools that submitted nominations. Money is transferred annually in the Spring.

All money will be transferred into the school budget account titled "Utility Conservation". The total award amount will be transferred to the supply reserve line, 5990. The budget coding for Utility Conservation awards will be fund– 1000 and fund center _X7927425.


Is my school eligible for Utility Conservation Funding?

Shared Savings Award: All schools with at least one full year of utility data are eligible to participate in the Shared Savings Program. Schools that are eligible are automatically enrolled. Savings are calculated based on utility use during the previous year. All District schools receive packets with school utility data and usage graphs. Winning schools also receive special certificates. Schools are not required to submit report how they have used the funds provided.

Green Team Funding: All schools are eligible to apply for Green Team Funding. Applications are typically due in the Winter. Green Teams fill out a short application and are encouraged to become a certified Green School through the Washington Green Schools program. Schools do not need to be or to become certified in order to receive funding. Schools are not required to report how they have used the funds provided.

Conservation Champion Award: Anyone can nominate a Conservation Champion involved in any of our schools. Nominations can be any length and may or may not include pictures or other documents. Once an individual is nominated the nominees' school is automatically entered into an annual drawing. The drawing winner(s) will receive funding. The school is not required to report on how the funding was used.


What can we spend our Utility Conservation Program money on?

Schools are encouraged to use their award money to continue current conservation projects or begin a new one. It is up to each school to determine what they would like fund at their school, and to manage the spend‐down of their Utility Conservation account. Schools are not required to submit any formal reports on how they spent the award money.

It is strongly recommended that the school Green Team decide how the school best use the funds provided. Some examples of past projects include: repairing window shades, supporting student Green Team meetings, field trips to the zoo/aquarium, building or maintaining a school garden, and purchasing tools for the custodian and building operators.

Individuals should work closely with the school Administrative Secretary, Fiscal Clerk, and/or Principal before using any Utility Conservation Program money to ensure that their intended use meets current District practices.


Do we have to participate in all three programs?

No. Schools are automatically eligible for Shared Savings Awards. You may choose to apply for one or both of the Green Team Funding and/or Conservation Champion programs.


How does the District fund these programs?

The District tracks resource use each year, and when we save money by using less resources a portion of this money may be provided to the schools that save resources. Compared to the previous years, district‐wide energy and water use has decreased. Refuse has also decreased, while recycling increased. This has resulted in avoided costs, or costs that SPS has not had to incur, for these utilities. Per SPS Policy H25.01, a portion of the savings is reinvested in Utility Conservation Programs to support conservation at a school level.


Questions or Comments?

Contact Nicole Laky at nalaky@seattleschools.org, 206‐252‐0599

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