Woods Charter School (WCS) is no stranger to being at the top of the class. Founded in 1998, WCS is a K-12 public school ranked in the top ten on many measures of school success in North Carolina. They have created a strong school culture centered on inclusivity, trust, and respect. Now they have sustainability to add to their list. In May 2020, Woods added 276,000 kilowatts of solar panels to their roof. This clean energy system will generate enough electricity to cut their utility bill by 41%. Most importantly, according to the EPA these kilowatt hours are equivalent to the carbon sequestration of 311 acres of U.S. forests for one year or green house gas emissions avoided by recycling 81 tons of waste.
Cotton Bryan, Principal at Woods Charter School said “When you stand atop our school building in the midday sun, the metal roof shines bright and just bakes under the sun’s rays. You don’t even have to be a fan of solar energy to know that there’s a missed opportunity there. We’ve tried for a decade to reach an arrangement that would make sense for us, but we never really gained traction until we partnered with Eagle Solar and Light and its lease program. We now have a system that will put our roof to good use, lower our carbon burden as a school, and save us a whole bunch of money over the life of the panels.”