Sequachee Valley Electric Cooperative Partners with TVA to Award $100,000 Grant to Bledsoe County Middle School Through School Uplift Program
Sequachee Valley Electric Cooperative recently announced that Bledsoe County Middle School, was awarded a $100,000 Learning Environment grant through Tennessee Valley Authority’s School Uplift program.
Tight budgets and aging buildings leave many schools facing a difficult decision between funding learning programs and making needed facility upgrades. TVA’s $7.3 million School Uplift program is helping 160 public schools in seven states solve that problem.
School Uplift is a 12-month behavior-based energy management training program developed with the State of Tennessee’s Energy Efficient Schools Initiative that helps public school districts make smart energy choices that improve the classroom learning environment and save money through decreased energy use.
“Sequachee Valley Electric Cooperative is proud to partner with TVA on the School Uplift program to invest in our schools and our communities,” said Mike Partin, SVEC president/CEO. “We are so excited that Bledsoe County Middle School earned this grant, which will enable administrators to make needed upgrades that will improve their facility and make the school more efficient, healthy and comfortable for teachers and students. The faculty, staff and students committed to making energy efficiency a priority over the last school year and earned this grant through their hard work.”
Sixty schools have completed the School Uplift pilot over the past two years, competing to earn grants for building upgrades and other learning environment improvements. Among them were Bledsoe County High School which earned a $200,000 grant for energy upgrades and Pikeville Elementary which was awarded a grant for the construction of a solar pavilion which will serve as an outdoor classroom. On average, participating schools have saved more than 10% on their annual energy bills from behavior changes alone.
“I have sat in so many school board facilities committee meetings discussing the energy efficiency upgrades that need to be made but it always comes down to where will the money come from,” said Brian Turner, Bledsoe County School District director of transportation and plant operations. “That is why we have had to go out and seek these grant opportunities. We are now at $600,000 with the two grants we received last year. That allows us to redirect money from our budget that would have gone to energy upgrades, to other needed projects.”
“Every dollar invested in our schools helps districts allocate resources to where it matters most – educating our children – and we’re excited to bring School Uplift to the communities we serve,” said Cindy Herron, vice president of TVA EnergyRight. “Helping schools save money on their energy costs and improve learning environments is an important investment in the Valley’s future. I look forward to seeing how this program makes an impact for years to come.”
TVA EnergyRight and Sequachee Valley Electric Cooperative will continue to recruit public K-12 schools for the 2023-2024 program later this year. Visit energyright.com/business-industry/school-uplift/ or contact Amanda Morgan Fann at firstname.lastname@example.org to express interest in participating in this exciting program.