North Penn School District receives award from Propane Council

September 11, 2023 By    

The Propane Education & Research Council (PERC) presented the North Penn School District with the Energy for Everyone Hero Award.

Energy for Everyone Hero Award photo courtesy of PERC

From left, Steve Skrocki, CFO, North Penn School District; Dennis Ryan, coordinator of transportation, North Penn School District; Todd Bauer, superintendent, North Penn School District; Tony Bandiero, executive director, Eastern Pennsylvania Alliance for Clean Transportation; Mason Hemphill, account representative, M.A. Brightbill Body Works; and Steve Whaley, director of autogas business development, Propane Education & Research Council. (Photo: PERC)

The national nonprofit organization, which promotes clean energy initiatives, gave the district the award for its commitment to student health and the environment by operating a near-zero emissions propane school bus fleet. Dennis Ryan, coordinator for transportation at North Penn, accepted the award last month during a celebration event at the district, located in Lansdale, Pennsylvania.

“North Penn is a leader in school transportation because they understand that there are cleaner, safer and healthier ways to get our children to school than on the diesel school bus you and I rode on years ago,” says Steve Whaley, director of autogas business development with the Propane Council. “Not only are the propane buses a benefit to the students, but the community has improved air quality, the environment is better off, and the district saves money with every bus. It’s a win for everyone and should be applauded.”

To start the new school year, 104 of North Penn’s 126 bus routes – or about 83 percent – will be powered by propane. As older diesel buses are phased out, North Penn is replacing them with new propane models. By 2026, the fleet will be 100 percent propane. With this initiative, North Penn is reducing its fuel and operating costs by several thousand dollars, according to district leaders.

“Ultimately we are here to support our students’ learning and health by putting additional clean, near-zero emissions buses on the road every day,” Ryan says. “This project was done to reduce operational costs and have those savings continue to go toward our students’ education.”

Adds Steven Skrocki, CFO of the school district, “This project is an excellent example of how the North Penn School District strives to make its support services programs, like transportation, more efficient and cost-effective in order to drive more money into the instructional program. The propane buses cost less to operate and deliver a lower total cost of ownership than diesel buses.”

Every day, 1.3 million children ride to school in 22,000 school buses across this country. Propane buses are currently in more than 1,000 school districts in 48 states.

About the Author:

Brian Richesson is the editor in chief of LP Gas Magazine. Contact him at or 216-706-3748.

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