Tag Archives: Green Schools

21st Century Schools Build on History with Elements of the Past

When Young Men’s College Preparatory Academy says goodbye to its 1920s-era building next year, the school may take a few pieces of history with it.

The original 1929 building cornerstone that sits on the west corner of the middle school building may be extracted to include in the new YMCPA facility that will be built in mid- to late 2014 with funds from the HISD 2012 bond program.

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Two Schools to Plant Dozens of Fruit Trees on Their Campuses

Lantrip Elementary also receives $20,000 grant for campus beautification project

Lantrip Elementary School and Austin High School are the recipients of two grants from the Fruit Tree Planting Foundation that will fund the planting of 25-30 trees at each campus in the coming week.

The Fruit Tree Planting Foundation (FTPF), an international nonprofit organization dedicated to planting fruit trees to improve health, strengthen communities and combat climate change, has joined the East End’s GreenSchools! Greenbelt, which currently includes Austin, Lantrip and Jackson Middle schools.

The GreenSchools! Greenbelt initiative, funded by the National Urban and Community Forestry Advisory Council, connects schools and communities through campus and community greening efforts in Houston’s East End.

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National Wildlife Federation Hosting Eco-Schools Workshop for Teachers

The National Wildlife Federation is hosting a workshop on Saturday, Dec. 14, for middle school science teachers to provide them with tools to launch a student-based energy efficiency program to make their school more sustainable and to get students more engaged in STEM. Continue reading

Briargrove’s Efforts to Build a Greener Campus Take Flight with Butterfly Garden Project

Briargrove Elementary students took on a big project to beautify their school during this year’s Green Apple Day of Service, and the results of that effort are now being considered for a national award.

The school used the day of service to spruce up their grounds and build a butterfly garden, utilizing materials from the City of Houston’s Reuse Warehouse – a space for excess building materials that would otherwise be dumped in local landfills. Now the school is a contender for the 2013 National Reuse Contest, sponsored by The Reuse People of America.

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HISD Green Schools Initiative Receives Proud Partner Award from Mayor

HISD’s Green Schools Initiative was honored Monday at the 29th Annual Mayor’s Proud Partners Luncheon for its commitment to building healthy and sustainable schools.

The school district received the J. Howard Rambin III Founder’s Award, which recognizes efforts to improve the city through projects that help beautify and transform Houston. “This is a celebration of people in the community doing great things,” said Houston Mayor Annise Parker, who lauded the efforts of organizations, volunteers and corporations at the event, sponsored by Keep Houston Beautiful. The luncheon drew more than 400 community leaders and volunteers.

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Science Teachers Have Opportunity to Make Schools Greener

The National Wildlife Federation is hosting a workshop on Saturday, Nov. 2, for middle school science teachers to provide them with the framework to implement a student-based energy efficiency program at their school that applies STEM teaching methods.

Teachers who attend will receive a $100 stipend, 6 CPE credits and TEKS aligned curriculum. Schools that send a team of two to three science teachers will be eligible for a $500 grant from the NWF to help their school become more sustainable.

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HISD Receives ‘Leadership in Action’ Award

HISD’s Green District Challenge energy conservation program was recognized with the 2012 Leadership in Action Award for Environmental Improvement earlier this week during the Leadership Houston awards luncheon.  The annual award recognizes Houston corporations and nonprofits that have made extraordinary contributions to the greater Houston community, through programs and projects in 10 different categories, including Environmental Improvement.

 “We are proud of our efforts to model for our students what it means to be good stewards of our financial and natural resources,” said HISD Superintendent Terry Grier. “Our schools are long term investments, so it’s important that we build facilities that use less energy. And through our Green School Challenge, our students are learning the important role they play in energy conservation.”

HISD Chief Operating Officer Leo Bobadilla accepted the award on the district’s behalf.

The District earned the Leadership in Action award for its precedent-setting  implementation of  a three-pronged initiative and comprehensive approach to energy efficiency, including capital improvements, process improvements, and behavioral change programs.  The District initiative features energy-efficient building designs, green building practices, fuel-efficiency initiatives, and behavioral change programs at the school campuses, and is complemented by a new energy performance contracting program that will allow district wide retrofits of facilities with emerging technology in energy-efficient lighting, building controls, HVAC equipment, and other building systems.

 HISD is also committed to building new facilities to the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards for the design, construction, and operation of high-performance “green” buildings. 

In 2011, HISD’s transportation department was named as the top school district green fleet by Government Fleet magazine, a first for HISD. HISD’s energy-efficient programs in transportation include outfitting special GPS equipment for idle reduction and route efficiencies, the use of alternative fuels such as biodiesel and propane, and the installation of emission reduction devices on 490 buses. 

This January, HISD implemented the Green School Challenge, a competition among schools, designed to inspire students to track their school’s energy use, and form campus ‘Green Teams’ to increase single stream recycling and decrease energy use.   

For more information about the district’s single stream recycling program, and other information on energy efficiency, visit www.houstonisd.org/greenschoolschallenge.