Posted on September 14, 2015

Highland Local Schools Sees Energy Efficiency Made Easy

Does the often time consuming cost of improving building efficiency overwhelm the potential benefits?

This was what leaders from Highland Local Schools were asking themselves after a lengthy investigation of LED Lighting Systems. “We wanted to find a fixture and find a way to get it done at a low cost,” says Bill Dodds, Superintendent of Highland Local Schools. A five-year-old and increasingly hard-to-maintain fluorescent lighting system in several highly populated areas of multiple schools prompted the search for a more efficient and affordable LED lighting program. “We spent one and one-half years researching and were no closer to starting the project than when we started.”

Frustration set in until Highland Local Schools’ Treasurer, Jon Mason, realized that META Solutions’ Market for Cooperative Purchasing not only could help them with the bus bid they were pursuing, but also had vetted and competitively bid LED Lighting vendors. “With an MEC [now META Market] approved vendor, it simplifies the decision-making process and saves time because the research has already been done,” says Superintendent Dodds. For example, projects awarded to approved vendors of the META Market can expedite the Ohio House Bill 264 process.

In this case, Spectrum LED Solutions, the META-approved lighting vendor, met with Highland Local Schools Administration and Facilities Management to define the scope of the project. After only a month and a half, Highland Local Schools was fully installed and seeing the benefits of the newly installed LED lighting. The transition started in an elementary school gym and grew to include 5 gymnasiums, 1 Cafeteria/Auditorium, 1 Fitness Room, 1 Atrium, and 2 Bus Garages. “From planning to execution, it was a smooth project. They came, did the job and cleaned up,” says Todd Belcher, Maintenance Supervisor.

Not only was the project done effectively, but also the maintenance-free lighting and 60% reduction in kWh is saving the district both money and maintenance time. “I love the light,” says Belcher, “but I love the thought of not getting up there to change the lights even more.” The USA-made LED fixtures carry a 7-year warranty and will likely last up to 15 years. Additionally, Spectrum LED Solutions was able to make the installation process even more cost effective with the design of a custom mounting solution that reused the existing high-bay mounting infrastructure.

As for the difference the new lighting is making, Superintendent Dodds says, “I would have never imagined the light levels; it fills the entire room.” This, despite the fact that there are actually less fixtures in some areas. Highland Local Schools plans to expand their lighting upgrades using Spectrum LED Solutions. Superintendent Dodds explains, “The return won’t just be seen on financial return, but also in saved time.”

Which cannot make the META Marketplace any happier, as we strive to connect districts with high quality tools and resources that make operations more cost effective, time sensitive and easier to navigate. As an awarded vendor, the partnership and quality interaction with Spectrum LED Solutions, is indicative of the seamless experience META Solutions wants to bring in building lasting relationships with our members and customers.

For more information on the products and services available through the META Marketplace please contact Chris Reed at

For more information about how Spectrum LED Solutions can assist your district, please contact Brian Klass (614) 286-9939, or visit