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Rick Electric updating lights at WFHS

Jeremy Krause of Rick Electric installs new lighting fixtures in the garage of West Fargo High School on Thursday. Daniel Determan

Rick Electric Inc. of Moorhead is in the middle of a large undertaking at West Fargo High School, as they are retrofitting the building with 3,500 new lighting fixtures.

The project, one of Rick Electric's biggest of the season, sees the school having new fluorescent T8 and LED lighting fixtures, which use up to 75 percent less energy and will help the school save money. When Rick's Electric's bid was accepted by the West Fargo School Board, district business manager Mark Lemer said the fixtures will pay for themselves within 10 years.

"They are using the latest technology with these," president Greg Rick said. "There will be a lot of savings, along with better lighting. The cost of energy for the school will be much, much less."

Rick Electric began the project in May, and must be finished by August 7, before teachers return to prepare for the new year.

"We are actually running ahead of schedule," Rick said. "We are doing just fine."

In addition to their lighting project, Rick Electric is also installing a classroom amplification system into each classroom in every elementary school and kindergarten building in the district. The total project sees 171 systems -- which includes two speakers and an amp -- being installed in each classroom.

"Every elementary school classroom of their existing buildings will be getting classroom amplification systems," project manager Eric Moe said. "It really reinforces the teacher's voice, and allows them to transmit any presentation through speakers."

Similar systems are already in place at Aurora and Freedom Elementary schools.

Studies have shown that the use of an amplification system can greatly increase a student's on-task behavior, as well as decrease any negative behavior.

It also prevents vocal strain, reducing teacher absenteeism.

Rick Electric Inc. has been providing electrical services to the Red River Valley for almost 50 years, catering to residential and commercial electrical work. For more information, visit