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U.S. Dept. Of Education Names Green Ribbon Schools, 2 In PA

The U.S. Department of Education Thursday released the names of the 2017 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools, including Coebourn Elementary School in Brookhaven, Delaware County and the School District of Philadelphia.

The award recognizes schools and districts that: Reduce environmental impact and costs; Improve the health and wellness of schools, students, and staff; and Provide environmental education, which teaches many disciplines, and is especially good at effectively incorporating STEM, civic skills, and green career pathways.

-- School District of Philadelphia: In May 2016 the district launched its first five-year sustainability plan, called GreenFutures. The plan aims to reduce energy consumption districtwide, increase waste diversion from landfills, increase school green spaces, and create healthy indoor environments and healthy living habits. Below are examples of just some of the many green initiatives the district has undertaken:

-- Home to 19 registered National Wildlife Federation EcoSchools and a 2013 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School.

-- LEED certifications have been obtained for eight district schools.

-- The district implemented a comprehensive recycling program at 42 schools and plans to implement full recycling programs at every school within five years.

-- Construction of large green stormwater infrastructure projects was completed at 31 schools.

-- In 2011, the district was awarded the EPA’s Indoor Air Quality Great Start Award for establishing an indoor environmental quality program that was based upon the EPA’s Tools for Schools program.

-- In 2016 a minimum of three hydration stations were installed at every school. These are filtered for lead, chilled, and have a bottle filling counter to illustrate to students how many water bottles are saved from landfills by using the stations.

-- The district uses certified Green Seal cleaning products.

-- Sustainability-infused curriculum, professional development opportunities for teachers and operations staff, and the intentional shift in organizational culture toward sustainability is a priority for the School District of Philadelphia.

-- Coebourn Elementary School, Penn-Delco School District: As stated on the U.S. Department of Education’s Green Ribbon Schools Highlights, “Coebourn Elementary is a new construction in the Penn-Delco School District that opened in January 2015.

During construction of the Coebourn Elementary, the district opted for a hybrid geothermal HVAC system, replaced several dual-fuel large boilers with high efficiency gas fired boilers and domestic hot water heaters, and installed heat wheels and reheat systems.

Coebourn uses low-flow fixtures throughout the school. There is no irrigation system onsite; grass is watered by rain only. The site includes rain gardens and stormwater inlets.

Coebourn has implemented and maintains a single stream recycling program with Waste Management as its partner. Coebourn’s science curriculum includes a deep understanding and connections to life, physical, and earth sciences.”

Save the date! A formal recognition event will be held at the Pennsylvania state capitol, June 27 from 11:00 a.m. to Noon.

For more information on green school programs, visit the PA Green & Healthy Schools website.


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(Reprinted from the May newsletter of the PA Green & Healthy Schools Program.)

[Posted: May 5, 2017]


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