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Tampa Electric provides electrical education and safety kits to school teachers

TAMPA, September 22, 2016

Tampa Electric has worked with local science teachers to develop and fund electrical safety education kits for all elementary schools across Hillsborough County.

The partnership grew out of Tampa Electric’s concern for safety. TECO staff met with teachers to learn what and how children were learning about electricity and safety precautions. Tampa Electric worked with curriculum experts to develop the kits, which will be used by fifth-grade science teachers in 150 schools. The company invested about $50,000 in the kits.

“Our goal was to be a partner with teachers,” said Mark Downing, corporate safety director for TECO Energy, the parent company of Tampa Electric. “It would have been easy for us to just purchase coloring books and other materials that are available, but instead, we sought out the experts at Hillsborough County schools – and developed new, relevant material that helps to support Florida’s science educational standards.”

The kits, valued at nearly $200 each, provide fun activities, such as building a simple electrical circuit. They include information about static electricity, conductors, insulators and electromagnets. The kits also include safety cards, developed by Tampa Electric, to help students learn how to be safe around electricity and downed power lines. If this program is successful, the company hopes to expand it in 2017.

"This information is critical for our students’ futures,” said Hillary Trupp, fifth-grade teacher at Grady Elementary. “Some of the careers we are preparing them for don't even exist yet, but they are science- and technology-based. Having these additional resources to support our students will set a foundation for them now."

Tampa Electric’s safety website at provides tips on how to be safe around downed power lines, how to prepare for storms and other safety resources for kids. In addition, the company developed a resource for teachers at, where teachers can download materials to support Florida’s science standards. The company also is developing safety videos for use in the classroom.

Tampa Electric, one of Florida’s largest investor-owned electric utilities, serves about 730,000 customers in West Central Florida. Tampa Electric is a subsidiary of Emera Inc., a geographically diverse energy and services company headquartered in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.

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