“This lighting improvement project not only saves our community’s tax dollars, it allows us to provide a better-lit gym for students,” says Willie Stone, Villisca Community Schools superintendent. His school district recently completed a high school gym lighting retrofit project with the help of a grant written by Energy Association of Iowa Schools (EAIS) and funded by Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA).

The minute the project was complete, Villisca’s students took notice. “Our teams love the new gym lights! They are much brighter,” explains high school principal Lora Top. “Students noticed right away that when their eyes have to follow a volleyball into the air, they no longer get the ‘black spots’ the old metal hallide lights caused if a direct look was necessary.” Another big improvement is that the new lights can be turned on instantly, when the old lights took about 15 minutes to warm up.

Gym light quality, as measured by EAIS before and after the project was completed, improved from a range of 8-15 foot candles, to a whopping 28-61 foot candles–while using less energy!

As a benefit of Villisca’s membership, EAIS provided Villsca the technical information and grant expertise needed to gain a matching State Energy Program grant from IEDA to complete the project. For more information about how your school can join EAIS, contact executive director Julie Weisshaar.