Center for Green Schools

Center for Green Schools announces Best of Green Schools awards

March 6, 2024
The awards recognize individuals, schools and organizations that help advance the cause of green schools.

The Boston school district and an Episcopal school in Southborough, Massachusetts, are among the 2024 recipients of Best of Green Schools Awards.

The Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council,  in collaboration with the Green Schools National Network, bestows the awards to honor and recognize individuals, schools, campuses and organizations active in advancing green schools nationwide.

This year's recipients:

  • School System: Boston Public Schools has invested in numerous sustainability practices and programs that have created healthier learning environments and equipped its students with the knowledge and tools to create more sustainable, environmentally conscious communities.
  • K–12 School: St. Mark’s School in Southborough, Massachusetts, adopted a sustainability strategic plan in 2015. The school’s efforts include reducing waste and water consumption by a significant margin, eliminating its carbon emissions from electricity consumption by entering into a green power contract and divesting from fossil fuels.
  • School District Champion: Lisa Randall served as sustainability program coordinator for Santa Fe (New Mexico) Public Schools for 13 years and was the founding coordinator of the district’s sustainability program. She led the district to generate 22% of its electricity from solar power and reduce water use by 52%, electricity use by 11% and natural gas use by 15%.
  • Policy Maker: U.S. Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey, U.S. Representative Jahana Hayes of Connecticut and U.S. Representative Raúl Grijalva of Arizona introduced the Green Ribbon Act, which seeks to strengthen and expand the Green Ribbon Schools program at the U.S. Department of Education. If passed, the program will provide resources to states so that they can encourage more schools to strive for and achieve the award.
  • Ambassador: Tatjana Rebelle, director of Equitable Initiatives for Earth Charter Indiana, empowers K–12 schools to adopt dynamic sustainability practices through numerous funding initiatives. These grants have enabled schools to add greener features to the physical environment as well as sustainability lessons to the curriculums for their students.
  • Michelle Curreri Collaborator Award:  California’s Climate Ready Schools Coalition  works to ensure that the buildings and sites of public schools are developed with sustainability and resilience to protect students as the climate continues to change rapidly.
  • Student Leader: Alex Wagonfeld from Nueva School in Hillsborugh, California, leads both the environmental club and the Nueva Fossil Fuel Divestment Team, motivating and inspiring fellow students to engage in environmental and sustainability initiatives.
  • K–12 Educator:  Amanda Talantis teaches sustainability and hospitality and tourism academies at Gulf Shores High School in Gulf Shores, Alabama. She empowers her students and colleagues to create more sustainable and green environments through her courses on Ecotourism and Sustainability.
  • Business Leader: Arrowstreet, an architectural firm based in Boston, designs preK-12 schools that advance sustainability, equity, and wellness. Its portfolio includes over 3 million square feet of net-zero buildings.
  • Moment for the Movement:  The U.S. Department of Energy‘s school-focused programs, such as the Healthy and Efficient Schools program and the Renew America’s Schools grants, have given renewed visibility to the role that schools play in ensuring a clean energy future and promoting healthy communities.

The awards, were announced at the 2024 Green Schools Conference in Santa Fe.

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