Santee Education Complex


Santee Education Complex opened in July 2005 as the first new four-year high school for the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) in over 35 years. The 338,000-square-foot educational complex serves over 1,940 students and 145 staff, and operates as one of the highest energy-consuming facilities compared to the district’s average. In 2014, the Energy Use Index (EUI) for Santee Education Complex was around 130 kBtu/sq. ft.


Santee Education Complex is a high school facility located in the Central Los Angeles area. The complex includes classrooms, a library, a gymnasium, offices, and an auditorium building. The campus also has an extensive central open area with athletic fields and a competition-size pool.

LAUSD is the second-largest school district in the United States, with over 1,200 K-12 schools and centers within 720 square miles, serving approximately 640,000 students.



In order to reach LAUSD’s 20 percent energy consumption reduction goal by 2024, targeted savings measures that were identified by a recently completed investment grade audit at the facility will be implemented through the Proposition 39* program. The efficiency opportunities identified include interior and exterior lighting upgrades, occupancy sensor installation, an energy management system upgrade, retro-commissioning the set points and operating schedule for the domestic hot water pump, efficient domestic water heater and boiler upgrades, and variable frequency drive (VFD) installation on water pumps. By June 2017, LAUSD anticipates savings of 33 kBtu/sq. ft., which equals a 25 percent EUI reduction.

1Proposition 39 is a state program providing funding to local educational agencies for improving energy efficiency and creating clean energy jobs.


The following are the energy reduction solutions that will contribute to the school’s targeted EUI reductions:

Savings Measure


Annual Expected Savings


Lighting upgrades and occupancy sensor installation



Replace 32w T8 lamp systems with 15W LED lamps & rapid-start electronic ballasts. Install occupancy sensors where applicable.

Exterior lighting upgrades



Replace existing exterior light fixtures with new fluorescent & LED technologies and upgrade exterior lighting control panels.

Energy management system upgrade



Upgrade existing front-end energy management system and HVAC control modules throughout.

Domestic hot water pump set points and schedule



Retro-commission set points and operating schedule for domestic hot water pump.


Hot water boiler upgrade



Install new efficient condensing hydronic hot water boilers.

Domestic hot water heater upgrade



Install new efficient tankless domestic hot water heaters.

Chiller VFD installation



Install VFDs for the chiller water pumps at Bldg. C.

Domestic hot water pumps VFD installation



Install VFDs for the domestic hot water pumps at Bldg. C.





Santee Education Complex is a High Performance-designed facility, incorporating sustainable and energy-efficient design and construction standards (site, water, energy, materials, indoor environmental quality, and operations), apart from the Proposition 39 initiatives and other energy efficient programs that are currently in place. The additional benefits resulting from these measures are:


Productivity Improvements

The integration of high-performance features into Santee Education Complex, such as lighting upgrades and thermal comfort improvement, make this an ideal place for learning and interaction among students, teachers, and campus staff. The district anticipates positive effects on the health and quality of the learning environment, which is expected to lead to decreased absenteeism and increased productivity.

Maintenance Savings

The long-term benefits also include cost savings from reduced maintenance as a result of the planned upgrades to the lighting, HVAC, domestic hot water pumps, and the energy management systems.


Annual Energy Use

Baseline (2014)
130 kBtu/sq.ft.
Expected (2018)
97 kBtu/sq.ft
Actual (2018)
Coming Soon

Energy Savings:


Annual Energy Cost

Baseline (2014)
Expected (2018)
Actual (2018)
Coming Soon

Cost Savings:


Sector Type



Los Angeles, California

Project Size

338,000 Square Feet

Financial Overview

$2.56 million

Santee Education Complex
Santee Education Complex