Getting involved with the federal Green Ribbon Schools program

Written By: Thatcher Michelsen December 22, 2011 0
Parents can help convince school officials to participate in government-sponsored green initiatives.
Parents can help convince school officials to participate in government-sponsored green initiatives.

Announced in September of 2011, the Green Ribbon Schools program is a new federal initiative by the U.S. Department of Education that aims to recognize schools that are doing their best to save energy, invest in environmentally friendly products and that feature sustainable learning spaces. Overall, the goal is to create happier, healthier environments for students, teachers and the surrounding communities.

While this program was only recently announced, some schools have been leading the charge when it comes to going green for some time. For example, Wilson High School in Washington, D.C., was profiled by area TV news source WJLA for its environmental activism, which it says has been ongoing for some time.

The newly renovated green building that houses the school comes complete with green roofing, an eco-lab and solar panels, and instructors have even altered curriculum to include classes that are focused on the environment and sustainability. These features will allow it to compete against other schools in the country as part of the new federal initiative, but it has other benefits.

"Definitely environmentalism and sustainable growth and sustainable use of resources are something these kids care about," Alex Wilson, director of academic development, told the news source.

According to the Green Ribbon Schools program's official website, parents can play an important role in raising awareness about the program with local educators. When schools decide to participate, parents can continue to play a crucial role, agreeing to host green activities and help enhance their child's career and technical skills.

As a result, parents may want to visit the program's website greenribbonschools.org to find out how they can get involved in spreading this initiative to their city or town.

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