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Prairie Heights receives Gold LEED Certification

A gold plaque now hangs in the cafeteria at Prairie Heights Middle School, designating the site as a Certified Gold LEED building.

A ceremony to unveil the plaque was held at the school Tuesday, October 9. Students, staff and members of the Board of Education gathered to recognize the achievement of the highest designation for LEED, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.

The district has been working on achieving the Gold LEED Certification since Prairie Heights was opened in August 2015. The designation recognizes Prairie Heights uses the most environmentally sound materials, energy and water use and is designed as a sustainable and healthy site for students and staff.

“This building is safer in terms of health and a more stable environment for learning,” said Kent Henson, assistant superintendent of support services for District 6.

Overall, Prairie Heights costs 20 percent less to operate than other District 6 buildings of similar size. Some of the features that qualify the school for a Gold LEED Certification include non-toxic building materials, window seals that prevent air leakage, use of nature light, low-energy electrical systems and low-water flush toilets.

“This is a big deal for District 6 and for Prairie Heights,” said Superintendent Dr. Deirdre Pilch. “Gold LEED Certification is not easy to obtain and we are grateful to the staff who helped make this happen.”

Prairie Heights was constructed by FCI Constructors, Inc. with a Building Better Schools Today grant and $8 from a taxpayer approved bond issue.