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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Hernando to allow mini-fridges in classrooms



BROOKSVILLE — Long live the mini-fridge!

In a move likely to send Hernando County teachers running for the appliance sections of their favorite stores, new superintendent Lori Romano recently announced that dorm-style refrigerators can return to the classroom.

The fridges were banned in 2011 as part of a districtwide effort to save money by identifying ways to reduce energy consumption.

One area: Eliminate personal classroom appliances.

Teachers weren’t big on the change.

“They were really upset,” said School Board member Cynthia Moore, who led the crusade to get mini-fridges back. “They’ve been having to carry coolers with their water in it or coolers with their food.”

Curious about the actual savings resulting from the ban, Moore put in a request.

The answer she got back: We don’t know.

Director of maintenance Sean Arnold said the overall program saved electricity, but he couldn’t break it down. “I would assume that if something is unplugged it is saving money,” he said.

Romano, who became superintendent in July, decided the ban wasn’t worth it.

“When we really thought about it and looked at the data, it wasn’t going to save us that much in terms of kilowatt hours.

“We can give on it,” she concluded.

Moore said teachers are ecstatic.

“Teachers need an advantage on something,” she said.

[Last modified: Friday, August 2, 2013 2:57pm]


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