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School system flush with $30M in grants
Warren County Schools logo.jpg

Warren County Schools is starting the year with an additional $18.7 million after receiving ESSER 3 final approval. 

In early December, Dr. Shae Panter told the county Education Committee that including all ESSER grants and additional allocations such as student homelessness allocations and EOC allocations the grand total of grant money is right at $30.4 million. One of the projects the school system is pursuing is an air quality project.

“One of the projects that was a part of that ESSER 3, and we actually talked about this in ESSER 2, was the air quality project,” said Director of Schools Dr. Grant Swallows at the December School Board meeting. “One of the things that was approved in our ESSER 3 is a second phase of the energy savings project that went on 2018-2019. 

What we have put into our plan that you all saw is to one, add some air quality and then also finish out any HVAC units that were not done in the previous phase.”

Energy Savings Group account executive Josh McNeil was present at the December School Board meeting to explain needlepoint bipolar ionization, which they plan to put in all school buildings. 

“We were actually using this technology pre-COVID,” said McNeil. “This came up a lot more post-COVID for obvious reasons, but at the end of the day really what it is is an indoor air quality enhancement device. We have used it in many school districts across Tennessee and I mean many have used this technology so it is a proven technology.”

McNeil says they have had this in place in certain school districts for many years and they have seen great results. He also says this system will not require much maintenance.

Added Swallows, “We’re making an investment that will save money over time and then making an investment in our community and our kids, our teachers, our employees. I will just say from my perspective, and I was not here during the first phase, but I have heard nothing but good things and we have seen considerable energy savings over the time and that is ultimately why we felt like entering into phase two with this was a good thing.”