Inside: Sustainable Design


A newsletter that focuses on environmental and health issues has assembled a list of the nation's Top 10 “Green Schools.”

The Green Guide looked at several criteria in choosing the schools: Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards; healthy school lunches; schoolwide green initiatives; green education; school procurement policies; the presence of contaminants (such as pesticides or lead paint); and school green spaces. The schools chosen:

  • Clackamas High School, Clackamas, Ore.

  • Michael E. Capuano Early Childhood Center, Somerville, Mass.

  • Case Middle School, Punahou Middle School, Honolulu, Hawaii.

  • Sakai Intermediate School, Bainbridge Island, Wash.

  • Third Creek Elementary School, Statesville, N.C.

  • Lick-Wilmerding High School, San Francisco.

  • Goodwillie Environmental School, Ada, Mich.

  • Clearview Elementary School, Hanover, Pa.

  • John M. Langston High School Continuation & Langston-Brown Community Center, Arlington, Va.

  • Willow School, Gladstone, N.J.


The Sustainable Buildings Industry Council has published a second edition of its High-Performance School Buildings Resource and Strategy Guide.

The 86-page guide describes the features and benefits of high-performance educational facilities and is targeted for those who make decisions about the design and construction of K-12 schools, and “anyone else advocating for school buildings that are cost-effective, sustainable, and healthy and productive for students, teachers, and staff.”

The revised edition includes new information on durability and updated sections on acoustics and security.

Section 1 of the book covers “What Is a High-Performance School Building?” and “Why Is a High-Performance School Building Valuable?” Section 2 provides issue-specific questions for each stage of the design process. Section 3 describes the 17 key “Building Blocks” that, when integrated as elements of a “whole building” design, result in a high-performance building.

The principal author of the guide is Deane Evans, director of the New Jersey Institute of Technology's Center for Architecture and Building Science Research. The guide is available at or by phone at (202)628-7400.


Washington state Gov. Christine Gregoire has signed legislation that requires new public buildings to meet green building standards for energy efficiency, water conservation and other environmental initiatives.

The law states that all public agency facilities of more than 5,000 square feet, including school buildings that receive state funding, will be required to meet the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards.

“Washington state is taking the lead to build schools and other state buildings that do a much better job of protecting Washington's air, land and water,” says Gregoire.

TAGS: Energy HVAC Green
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