Wednesday, December 14, 2011

MAEOE Green School Tour

On Monday, December 12, 2011 MAEOE was pleased to host Andrea Falken from USDE Green Ribbon Schools and Kim Martinez from National Wildlife Federation on a MAEOE Green Schools Tour! The tour consisted of Bond Mill ES, Friends Community School and Northwood High School. The tour was a great snapshot of the MAEOE Green School Certification and the wonderful actions in place. Read some of the snapshot projects going on at each of the three schools toured:

Bond Mill Elementary School
· School hosts a Beautification Day each Spring where each child brings a plant or tree to be planted on the school grounds. The PTO provides mulch, extra plants and assistance on the planting day.
· Green Shoe Program – each day, teachers take attendance and track how many students got to school NOT by means of a car or bus and the classroom with the highest non-motorized attendance wins the ‘golden shoe’ to keep in the class for the quarter. There are 2 shoes, one for K, 1, 2 and a second for 3, 4, 5 grades
· Alliance for a healthier generation – the school nurse took the BMIs for all students and found that 39% of students were nationally ranked as obese – as a result, the school has banned cupcakes and offers alternative options for birthday celebrations such as extra recess for children whose Birthday falls in that month.
· Partnership with a local diner – every family receives a card and when they order off the healthy menu at the diner, 20% of profits go to the school - $900 so far this year!
· Partnership with Kohl’s Department Store – each month, a team of Kohl’s employees volunteer at the school to help with an environmentally based project and $500 is donated to the school.

Friends Community School
· LEED Silver Building with straw bale insulation and a green roof on 17 acres
o Solar tubes which mirror natural light from the roof
o Green Roof
o Carpet tiles made with all green materials and no need to replace the whole carpet, just worn tiles
o 96% efficient boilers and radiant heaters
o All lights are on motion sensors
· The school celebrates Earth Week, not just one day and place the week’s worth of trash on the front steps. This direct, in your face approach resulted in an immediate increase in recycling.
· Runoff control in a bio-retention pond
· Each classroom has a garden as well as a butterfly garden and salad garden
· Integrated Pest Management Plan to control a tick problem on the school’s campus
o Deer feeders treated with all natural tick repellant
o Garlic sprinkling along wetland borders on the school’s campus

Northwood High School
· Rain Gardens and Pervious Pavers around the School Stadium and at the front entrance
· Native Tree Plantings and Spring plantings of fruits and vegetables on the school grounds
· Aquaponic plants in the school greenhouse which grow herbs and raise goldfish
· Forest cleanup and trail building on 15 acres of the school
o Run by students and community volunteers
o Potomac Appalachian Club designed the trail
o Removed more than 10,000lbs of trash

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