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ECOfreak: Walsingham Drinks Up the Sun

By Desiree Parker

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

I had a fantastic visit this week with folks from Walsingham Academy and Pyramid Roofing, who took some time out to tell me about the new solar panels that Pyramid donated and installed for Walsingham as part of its Partners in Education: From Rooftop to Classroom program.

Not only did I get to hear about it, I got to clamber up on the roof and take a peek, which was super exciting.

Pyramid installed five, 220-watt panels on the roof of the Upper School. The panels are connected to the power supply and help offset the building’s power usage, thanks to the folks with Tech Electric who did the electrical hookup. There is plenty of room to add more panels in the future, too, I saw after my exhilarating climb.

Upper School Principal Katie Johnson explains that the panels have only been installed for about a week, but the benefits for students will go beyond just reducing the school’s carbon footprint.

Students and teachers will have computer access to real-time usage information as well as long-term tracking, Johnson says, and will likely be used by more than just science students. She says students in math and social justice classes, as well as clubs might take an interest and find a way to use the data.

According to Pyramid President Dan Worstell and Solar Advisor Nathan “Solar Nate” Kona, the company is looking to give students the chance to learn about renewable energy and instill an excitement in the younger generation.