Superintendent William R. Hite Monday announced the School District of Philadelphia’s first-ever sustainability plan, GreenFutures. This five-year sustainability plan supports Action Plan 3.0, the School District’s strategic vision, in better serving all students.
GreenFutures provides a framework to reduce the District’s environmental footprint, conserve resources, decrease consumption and waste, and create green school settings and healthy indoor environments for every student.
The plan encourages District staff, students, families and school communities to participate in developing and implementing sustainability initiatives.
“GreenFutures was designed to answer the question, ‘What can we do today, as a school district, to enhance our children’s well-being and preserve our limited resources for future generations?’” said Dr. Hite. “GreenFutures is more than a strategic plan. It is an opportunity for all of us, in our own way, to contribute to every child’s health and well-being – both at school and in our communities – and to preserve our environment for the future.”
“I applaud the School District for its commitment to sustainability, demonstrated through the release of their GreenFutures plan,” said Mayor Jim Kenney. “Green schools not only save money through the conservation of energy and other resources, but they also provide a healthier environment that promotes learning. GreenFutures will also educate and engage students on urgent environmental issues, like climate change, and prepare them for green careers.”
District staff members in academics and operations developed GreenFutures over a two-year period in collaboration with several City of Philadelphia agencies and external partners.
GreenFutures is modeled after Greenworks, the City’s sustainability framework.
Five focus areas comprise the plan: Education for Sustainability; Consumption and Waste; Energy and Efficiencies; School Greenscapes; and Healthy Schools, Healthy Living.
Each focus area has a mission, goal, target and related actions. Starting June 2017, an annual progress report will be issued to share measurable outcomes for each focus area and to gain input from school communities and the public.
GreenFutures Targets And Metrics
The plan has specific targets and a roadmap of over 60 actions to attain the targets over a five-year period.
-- Education for Sustainability – Infuse Education for Sustainability into school curriculum, administrative practices and family and community engagement.
— Target: Every school and administrative office will show evidence of Education for Sustainability.
— Action: Create and facilitate Professional Learning Communities and Green Teams.
-- Consumption and Waste – Every school will recycle.
— Target: The District will increase its waste diversion from landfills by 10 percent.
— Action: Conduct Comprehensive and Periodic Waste Stream Auditing.
-- Energy and Efficiencies – Every school will conserve energy.
— Target: The District will decrease its energy consumption by 20 percent.
— Action: Provide energy education programs to help schools understand and intervene to reduce utility use.
-- School Greenscapes – Every school will have green space.
— Target: The District will increase its green schoolyards by five schools annually.
— Action: Develop a teacher resource tool with information on applying for green schoolyard funding.
-- Healthy Schools, Healthy Living – Every school will be healthy.
— Target: The District will assess thirty schools annually to obtain a healthy schools baseline.
— Action: Develop plan to increase drinking water access at every school.More information will be posted on the School District of Philadelphia’s website.
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