Fun with Fractions

Joanne Jacobs knows the difference between one-quarter and three-eighths, which is more than can be said for the folks at the United Federation of Teachers.

UFT will shut down “much” of its main office on Fridays for the rest of the summer, ostensibly to save money during the recession. Except that the employees who will no longer show up for work on Fridays will still be paid, so it sounds more like eight additional paid holidays than a cost-cutting measure. Especially curious is this remark:

“A spokesman for the UFT, Peter Kadushin, said the days off, which amount to a total of eight, are one of several cost cutting plans, and would likely shave 40 percent off the UFT’s energy bill.”

I’m not privy to UFT’s energy consumption patterns, and I understand that air conditioning in the summer probably burns more energy than heat in the winter, but how does one day of partial closing a week for eight weeks equal 40 percent in energy savings?