December 8, 2009
FPL powers up Charlotte County's L.A. Ainger Middle School with Next Generation Solar program for hands-on learning

ROTONDA WEST, Fla. – Just weeks after President Obama visited Florida to commission Florida Power & Light Company’s DeSoto Next Generation Energy Center -- the largest photovoltaic solar plant in the nation -- FPL and officials with Charlotte County Public Schools unveiled similar technology at L.A. Ainger Middle School in Rotonda West.

L.A. Ainger Middle School’s Next Generation Solar Education Station features solar panels similar to those operating at the DeSoto plant and now provides students a hands-on tool to learn about renewable energy. The school is one of six in the state at which FPL is installing Next Generation Solar Education Stations. 

“When these students grow up, renewable energy will be central to their lives. As FPL constructs groundbreaking new solar power plants, such as the one in DeSoto County, we believe it's important to help educate the next generation of Floridians so they understand what it means for them now and in the future,” said Charlotte Miller, FPL regional manager for Southwest Florida.

Over the summer, two of L.A. Ainger’s science teachers learned how to incorporate solar energy lessons into their curriculum. Now they are sharing these lessons with their students.

An online tool will show the power generated at each Next Generation Solar Education Station after they are completed. It may be viewed at: http://www.fpl.com/community/learning/solarstations.shtml.

This site also contains complete information about FPL’s Next Generation Solar Education program, including the curriculum and how teachers in FPL’s service territory can apply for a grant to help them create classroom projects on renewable energy. The site also shows the locations of the other five Next Generation Solar Education Stations planned, operating or under construction in Florida:

  • Hinson Middle School, Daytona Beach (Volusia County)
  • Mandarin Lakes Academy K-8 Center, Homestead (Miami-Dade County)
  • J.D. Parker Elementary School, Stuart (Martin County)
  • Deerfield Beach Middle School (Broward County)
  • SunCoast Community High School, Riviera Beach (Palm Beach County)

Florida Power & Light Company
Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) is the largest electric utility in Florida and one of the largest rate-regulated utilities in the United States. FPL serves 4.5 million customer accounts in Florida and is a leading employer in the state with nearly 11,000 employees. The company consistently outperforms national averages for service reliability while customer bills are well below the national average. A clean energy leader, FPL has one of the lowest emissions profiles and the No. 1 energy efficiency program among utilities nationwide. FPL is a subsidiary of Juno Beach, Fla.-based FPL Group, Inc. (NYSE: FPL). For more information, visit www.FPL.com.