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John Henry Educational Information and Resource Center (EIRC) US Green Building Council-NJ Chapter Green School Advocate [email protected] USGBC Green Schools Advocacy Campaign In order to achieve the vision of “green schools for every child

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John Henry

Educational Information and Resource Center (EIRC)

US Green Building Council-NJ Chapter

Green School Advocate

[email protected]

USGBC Green Schools Advocacy Campaign

In order to achieve the vision of “green schools for every child

within a generation,” we must not only build new schools that

are green, we have to transform our existing schools.

Curriculum designed and integrated using the building systems as a teaching tool must be part of the green building process.

If not, schools miss an opportunity to operate and maintain a school in a way that will ensure that the features that made them green will be sustained over a long period of time.

Schools are the focal point of community sustainability

LEED for Schools… systems as a teaching tool must be part of the green building process.

  • Developed by the U.S. Green Building Council in 2007

  • Inspired the creation of the national Green Schools initiative

  • LEED Is the nationally recognized benchmark for building green

  • schools

  • The LEED Rating System recognizes the unique nature of the design

  • and construction of K-12 schools

  • Provides a unique, comprehensive tool for schools that wish to

  • build green or transition an existing building with measurable results

  • Certification provides parents, teachers and the community with

  • a “report card” for their school buildings – verifying that the school has

  • been built to meet the highest level of performance

What is a green school
What is a Green School? systems as a teaching tool must be part of the green building process.

  • Green School /grEn skül / n. a school building or facility that creates a healthy environment that is conducive to learning while saving energy, resources and money

    • Benefits of green schools

      • A healthy, productive learning environment

      • Improved teacher retention

      • Financial savings

      • Hands-on learning

      • Environmentally Friendly

USGBC, Green Schools Campaign

  • A Green School:

    • Improves education through hands-on, real-world learning about energy and energy efficiency

    • Strengthens schools by saving money on energy costs

The Alliance for Saving Energy

Some call green schools high performance schools

A high performance school is: systems as a teaching tool must be part of the green building process.



Energy Efficient

Material Efficient

Easy to Maintain and Operate

Environmentally Responsive Site

A Building that teaches

Safe and Secure

Community Recourse

Stimulating Architecture

Adaptable to Changing Needs

Opportunity to increase academic performance by engaging students in real-world experiences relevant to their life

What is a Green School?

Some call green schools “high-performance schools”

The Collaborative for High Performance Schools (CHPS)

On K-12 Construction systems as a teaching tool must be part of the green building process. systems as a teaching tool must be part of the green building process.

USGBC-NJ Chapter Strategic Plan

Develop educational programs that will connect the Green building industry tomainstream Environmental Education

LEED Rating System Categories

The ultimate hands on learning experience:

The building as a teaching tool.

Green schools curriculum framework based on the leed for schools green building rating system
Green Schools Curriculum Framework on the LEEDfor Schools Green Building Rating System

  • Sustainable Sites

  • Water Efficiency

  • Energy and Atmosphere

  • Materials and Resources

  • Indoor Environmental Quality

  • Innovation and Design Process

    • Using the School as a Teaching Tool

  • Unit 1 Sustainable Sites:

  • fundamentals of sustainability

  • investigate a green building footprint and how they can impact the environment

  • conduct sustainability evaluations of the existing school grounds

  • Unit 2. Water Efficiency:  

  • how to reduce and reuse water 

  • track the use of water in buildings.

  • determine the quality of water locally

  • determine if unhealthy situations exist in rivers, streams and ponds and identify

  • causes and solutions. 

  • Unit 3 Energy, and Atmosphere: 

  • learn about current uses of energy production methods

  • global warming and climate change

  • how green buildings can significantly reduce the negative impact on greenhouse gas

  • emissions and investigate and share low and no-cost solutions that will decrease

  • carbon footprint

  • learn about energy audits, alternative energy sources and the politics that drive

  • continued use of current methods of energy production

  • Unit 4. Materials and Resources:

  • learn about waste management, regionally produced products, conservation and

  • financial savings

  • learn about new materials that are being produced using recycled content

  • recycling programs

  • local and global resources, populations and various other factors that will impact how

  • and where we live in the future

  • Cradle to Cradle materials

  • Unit 5 Indoor Environmental Quality:

  • investigate the science, technology and the benefits from the increased quality of

  • indoor air

  • lighting, acoustics and temperature control

  • students begin to assess and address these topics and develop an action plan to

  • collect data, analyze and implement changes in their home, school and community

  • Unit 6. Innovation and Design Process:

  • students take on the role of LEED Accredited Professionals and other team members

  • needed to design a green building






Curriculum projects and resources
Curriculum Projects and Resources


Summerfield Elementary School

Curriculum projects and resources1
Curriculum Projects and Resources

Green Schools for Teachers Workshop

NJEA and Green Industry Professionals sponsored

Summer 2009

Curriculum Projects and Resources

Curriculum Projects and Resources

New Jersey Selected as One of Five States to ParticipateIn Federal Technical Assistance Academy to Develop ‘Green’ CTE Program

Partnering with the N.J. Council of County Vocational-Technical Schools (NJCCVTS), the state Department of Education applied for the technical assistance program to help with current efforts to develop a statewide program of study for emerging careers that have an environmental or renewable energy focus.  

LEED is a featured Lesson in the curriculum

TALENT21 Grant

Teaching and Learning with Essential New Technologies in the 21st Century (TALENT21).

Division: Educational Standards and ProgramsOffice: Academic Standards

A technology based grant that two schools designed units and lesson plans using the LEED rating system.

The NJ DoE Understanding by Design unit and lesson plan template was used aligning to NJCCCS.

2009-2010 Hilltop School’s LEED Curriculum Project-Marshall County Schools, West Virginia

Aligned to the West Virginia Department of Education’s 21st Century Content Standards and Objectives and the

Global 21 Initiative: Students deserve it – The world demands it

Case Studies

Alder Creek Middle School (PDF 690 KB)Desert Edge High School (PDF 804 KB)Fossil Ridge High School (PDF 383 KB)Homewood Middle School (PDF 515 KB)Northern Guilford Middle School (PDF 363 KB)

Developing a district wide green schools action plan
Developing a District-Wide Green Schools Action Plan

  • 1. Establish a Green Team

    • Who will be the key Stakeholders and what purpose will they serve?

    • Resources?

    • Others?

2. Green Resolution, Mission or Pledge

How will you demonstrate your commitment towards a sustainable school?

3. Green Education into the Curriculum. (place based learning) The school building as a teaching tool.

How can you integrate the LEED or other green rating systems into Environmental Education, Mathematics, Science and other contentareas?

  • 4. Local Resources , Community Support and Community integration.

    • What local resources can you use to support your green effort?

    • How can you involve parents and other community members?

    • How can what you create extend beyond the school and become part of the community?

Developing a district wide green schools action plan1
Developing a District-Wide Green Schools Action Plan

  • 5. Building Maintenance and Operations Action Steps.

    • What Low or no cost, immediate, short-term and achievable steps can you take to move you closer to becoming a Green School?

    • What long-term steps can you take to forward the greening of your school?

    • How can the building maintenance personnel help your school to go green?

6. Administration Support

How can the administration support your Green Schools effort?

  • 7. Budget, Benchmarking, Evaluating and Tracking Change

    • What budget, if any, would be needed to start the green schools effort?

    • How and what will you benchmark as a starting point?

    • What categories will you track, and how will you track the changes that occur?

    • How will you evaluate your progress towards a Green School?

    • How can students be part of the process for benchmarking, implementing and tracking

Developing a district wide green schools action plan2
Developing a District-Wide Green Schools Action Plan

8. School Event

What school event or activity can you create that will showcase and celebrate your green accomplishments?


Green Schools for Teachers

US Green Building Council NJ Chapter

USGBC Green School Buildings

Center for Green Schools at USGBC