Next year, Philly will be home to more than 5,000 brand new solar panels installed across 20 area schools. A tall order, but luckily the Philadelphia Solar Schools Initiative has already started in on the work.
Currently, the PSSI (made up of partners Solar States and Clean Currents) is seeking a full-time director to head up their efforts, but that hasn't stopped them from instituting daily classes at YouthBuild Charter School detailing the business side of sustainability, along with entrepreneurship opportunities in the green industry. As-yet volunteer-lead, the PSSI hopes to expand their education output to more schools with the inclusion of a full-time director.
By the end of 2014, the aim is to install solar panels on the roofs of 20 area schools to provide 1.5 megawatts of clean energy. But that, according to a release, isn't the only goal:
"The Philadelphia Solar Schools Initiative (PSSI) is a new program with a mission to connect sustainable energy, education, and economic development in Philadelphia. Through PSSI, Solar States will:
a. Partner with investors to finance solar arrays for 20 local schools that would not be able to install solar panels otherwise.
b. Teach students in those schools about green energy (addressing multiple state Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math - STEM - standards) and give them hands-on experience with solar technology.
c. Train students at Youth Build Charter School, a school for 18-21 year old students who have dropped out of traditional high schools, to design and install solar arrays and give them paid on-the-job experience as we complete all of the school installations."
See that? A plan. Multi-stepped, defined, and, above all, green. Hopefully the School District is paying attention.