Big changes are coming to energy consumption at Jersey City schools. Last night, the Board of Education approved an Energy Savings Improvement Plan, or “ESIP,” that is expected to be the largest such project in New Jersey history.

The ESIP, as presented to the Board at Monday’s caucus, is widespread and designed to increase student productivity in the classroom and save money in the budget for re-allocation. Priorities in the ESIP include new HVAC equipment for eight schools, boiler replacements, roof restorations for 21 schools, and district-wide interior and exterior LED lighting. There will also be a new unified energy management system across the district and increased use of renewable solar energy.

In addition to energy conservation measures, there are also educational programs provided, such as working with the district to incorporate lessons about energy conservation across grade levels. There will also be a program specifically tailored to increasing the number of women in STEM/STEAM, engineering, and construction industries.

According to the presentation from Monday’s meeting, the approved measures “will be substantially complete by September 2025” and have an estimated value of $122,202,278.

2023-2027 Strategic Plan

Also at last night’s meeting, the last of the 2022-2023 academic year, the Board approved the Jersey City Public Schools Strategic Plan that sets the district-wide goals for the next four years.

The mission statement of the strategic plan states, “Jersey City Public Schools empowers all scholars within its diverse community with the foundational skills to be life-long learners and ensures their academic, social-emotional, and career success through safe environments and equitable access to opportunities.”

Priorities of the plan include academic achievement to prepare students for graduation and beyond, social-emotional wellness, equity to allow all families to have proper resources, authentic family and community engagement, and efficient operations and facilities across the district. The plan seeks to ensure that all graduates from Jersey City Public Schools will “enter the community as productive citizens,” according to Superintendent 

Ryan Kilkenny was born and raised in New York. He graduated with a BS from Tulane University and a JD from Rutgers Law School. Ryan worked as an attorney for almost two years before switching careers and...