Skip To Main Content
MKA Makes a Major Investment in Renewable Energy

Montclair Kimberley Academy (MKA) is proud to announce a substantial investment in sustainability and clean energy. Through a newly completed solar panel installation project across all three campuses, the school is poised to become a significant energy producer in the community. This transition is expected to yield significant savings by replacing traditional energy sources with clean energy harvested from the sun. Board member and co-chair of the Sustainability Committee Rick Andlinger said, “This is a big step for MKA on the decarbonization pathway and a tangible embodiment of the school’s mission.”

The school has had a longstanding commitment to environmental stewardship and continues to lead through resource conservation, preservation, and regeneration for the betterment of both the environment and the community. Over the past four years, MKA has systematically replaced and upgraded roofs on the Primary, Middle, and Upper School campuses so the school could move forward with the significant installation of solar arrays and make a meaningful commitment to renewable energy. MKA partnered with Novitium Energy, a nationally-renowned commercial solar energy development company headquartered in New Jersey that has delivered successful installations of many large-scale solar facilities for both non and for-profit entities. “The professionalism and experience that Novitium delivered throughout the scope of the project made our vision come to life,” shared Kathryn Davison, MKA’s Chief Financial Officer.

A total of 1,717 solar panel modules were installed at MKA: 375 at the Primary School, 797 at the Middle School, and 545 at the Upper School. Head of School Nigel D.Furlonge noted the significant contributions and collaboration between the school’s Sustainability Committee, the MKA leadership team–particularly Kathryn Davison and Director of Physical Plant and Security James Castelli–and the Montclair community. The realization of this project will have lasting implications for the surrounding neighborhood of each campus and is a clear manifestation of the school’s mission. He said, “As stewards of our planet and architects of tomorrow's world, we must consciously and intentionally drive resource conservation and preservation.” 

In the first year of producing electricity on-site alone, MKA’s solar arrays are projected to produce 975,231 kWh of energy and save another 48,762 kWh of energy typically lost through transmission. Any excess energy unused by the school will be sold back to PSE&G and consumed locally, hopefully reducing such energy loss. The integration of solar energy production into the school's academic programming, particularly in STEM fields, presents exciting opportunities. Classrooms will be enriched with real-time data, fostering interdisciplinary learning across grade levels. The prospect of developing lessons and extracurricular activities around onsite energy production has generated enthusiasm throughout the entire community.

MKA's ability to deliver on its sustainability commitment is bolstered by a philanthropic community and a healthy financial position, enabling the school to undertake projects and priorities that align with its values and mission.