Energize Delaware’s Grant presents an exciting opportunity for Delaware’s 19 public school districts to embrace solar energy solutions. With a substantial $15 million grant allocation this program aims to support the installation of solar systems in public schools across the state. In this blog post, we will delve into the important factors that schools must consider when taking advantage of this opportunity to install solar energy. Here are the key features of this program.

Funding allocation is based on student enrollment size

This program allocates $15 million in funding, facilitating the distribution of grants to 19 deserving school districts. Each district has the potential to receive a minimum grant of $500,000, equivalent to approximately $105 per student. [See chart below]

Feasibility study requirement

To qualify for funding, schools must complete a feasibility study to evaluate the suitability and viability of solar installation on their properties. It is important to note that the feasibility study cannot be performed by an installer. However, TerraSol Energies, a local partner, is offering DE Public Schools a free preliminary feasibility study, which can help schools make informed decisions prior to receiving the official feasibility study required for the grant application.

Find a solar installer

It is crucial to identify a trustworthy solar installation partner for your school. TerraSol Energies Inc. is a reputable local partner that can guide your school through every phase of the solar project. TerraSol offers educational seminars for students to learn about solar energy and the workforce development opportunities provided by the solar industry. TerraSol’s solar learning workshop can be added to the curriculum of your middle school or high school.

Solar system options

The grant allows schools the flexibility to choose between various solar system installations, including rooftop, ground-mounted, or carport systems. Additionally, the grant covers the cost of installation and utility upgrades, streamlining the transition to clean energy.

Battery inclusion

Schools have the option to incorporate battery storage as part of their solar systems. Batteries provide emergency backup power and enhance the resilience of the school’s energy infrastructure, ensuring uninterrupted energy supply during power outages.

Monitoring and reporting

As part of the grant requirements, schools must report the annual production of solar energy for the first three years of system operation. This reporting process fosters transparency and allows for the evaluation of the solar systems’ performance. Most installers provide monitoring software that simplifies the reporting of system production.

Evaluation Criteria

To determine the grant recipients, Energize Delaware has established specific evaluation criteria. Here are the key considerations:

  • Building and Infrastructure: The age of the roof and building plays a crucial role. Older infrastructure may require additional upgrades to support solar installations effectively. Newer schools or those under construction are often better suited for renewable energy systems.
  • Mounting Options: The choice between ground-mounted and rooftop systems depends on factors such as available space, orientation, shading, and aesthetics. The reasoning behind the selected mounting option is evaluated during the selection process.
  • Energy Efficiency: Schools demonstrating a commitment to energy efficiency through weatherization and insulation measures are more likely to receive grant funding.
  • School Curriculum Integration: Grant recipients are encouraged to outline plans for integrating the solar PV system into the school curriculum, fostering students’ understanding of renewable energy and sustainability.

Grant Disbursement Process

Energize Delaware will transfer 50% of the invoiced or contract amount to the school district upon documentation approval of a solar array component purchase order. The remaining 50% will be transferred upon receiving the installation scheduling date.

Solar installation Questions

TerraSol Energies welcomes your questions, simply contact Ryan Drummond at 610-297-4203 or ryan.drummond@tse-solar.com

Energize Delaware School Grant Allocation

Energize Delaware School District Funding Allocation | Source: energizedelaware.org

Energize Delaware School District Funding Allocation | Source: energizedelaware.org