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Creating perfect places

The places where we spend our lives can change our lives

The world is changing. And with it, education needs to change, too. Kids need to learn for the future that awaits them, and they can’t do that with educational methods from the past. New teaching methods need a new teaching environment. And at Pine Grove Middle School in East Syracuse, New York, building technology from Siemens helps to create the new learning environment that new minds need.

A perfect place to prepare students

Pine Grove Middle School: This building changes futures

Pine Grove Middle School is one of seven schools in East Syracuse Minoa Central School District (ESM) in New York, educating 3,750 students every year. With a realization that the world has undergone dramatic changes – not least in the world of employment, and the skills required – the educators at Pine Grove made a decision that education needed to change.


The world has changed, and education needed to change, too. We changed how the students learn. We changed what they learn. That meant changing where they learn.

Adrienne Turbeville, Content Literacy Support Teacher at Pine Grove Middle School
Pine Grove, in the East Syracuse Minoa Central School District, defines education as preparing their students for the world they’ll face when they leave school. Because the world has changed. And with it, the skills required, too.


Changing how the students learn meant changing where they learn. Pine Grove teaches for a new world and that means teaching in a new environment.


To improve the learning environment, East Syracuse Minoa Central School District reduced energy costs to fund building improvements – and what matters most to the school: improving the educational environment and experience.


Pine Grove Middle School has transformed from a place to learn into a place to learn from – thanks to the energy and sustainability consulting and an integrated building solution from Siemens.


Where the students learn impacts how they learn. The school environment affects the teaching methods. How the students learn. And the lessons they take home with them. Open, flexible spaces encourage open, flexible learning.


Building technology from Siemens makes Pine Grove Middle School a perfect place to prepare students for the world that’s waiting for them.


A new teaching environment for a new world

The right conditions make learning possible

Central New York is known for its extremes of temperature with burning hot summers and nine-foot snowdrifts in the winter. To ensure that the students are comfortable and focused, temperature control is an important element. And as a state-funded educational institution, energy efficiency is just as important to the school. Because the US$500,000 saved on energy every year can be invested directly into improving the educational environment.

The money saved on energy is used directly for improving the educational environment.

New teaching methods require new technology

Since East Syracuse Minoa School District (ESM) is a learning organization, enhancing its overall educational environment for the students is a key concern for the district. By partnering with Siemens to make energy-efficient facility improvements ESM has been able to not only save money, but realize their vision by implementing a new teaching and learning model.

ESM developed an integrated learning approach teaching subjects collaboratively to help students develop their STREAM (Science, Technology, Research, Engineering, Arts and Math) knowledge, as well as problem-solving and presentation skills and abilities. Siemens partnered with ESM to transform the curriculum, from pre-kindergarten through grade 12, to develop true transdisciplinary projects through consultative support and hosting symposiums.

Building and energy efficiency create energy awareness.

One partner, many objectives

In 2008, ESM was looking for a business and technology partner who could help them enhance energy efficiency in all of its eight buildings with a solution that would also contribute to the overall learning process for ESM students and staff.

In addition to reducing energy costs, ESM also wanted to fund building and energy efficiency improvements through energy savings, improve energy conservation and provide energy awareness and education for the students, faculty, and staff. In addition, the district wanted to create community awareness for its energy and environmentally responsible programs and demonstrate the use of alternative energy technologies. Siemens retrofitted the lighting throughout the district, and implemented premium efficiency motors as well as variable frequency drive pumps and fans. New windows and doors and a district-wide energy management system as well as new boiler plants in four buildings help ESM to save as much electricity in a month as 6.2 average American homes consume in a whole year. In addition, Siemens installed a 25 kW solar power system to further demonstrate ESM’s sustainability efforts.

Reduced energy costs freed up budget for funding building improvements.

Financing investments through sustainable energy savings

ESM will generate estimated energy savings of US$500,000 annually over the term of the 18-year Energy Performance Contracting. Siemens’ energy saving solutions have also funded significant, energy-efficient building improvements at ESM. No additional costs to the local taxpayers have been incurred, and the district has been able to conserve energy and realize an immediate utility cost savings. To ensure that energy savings are achieved, a measurement and verification program is in place for the district.

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