Green Forest EAST Receives the NWF Eco-School Bronze Star

   

Green Forest EAST Receives the NWF Eco-School Bronze Star
8/14/2013 3:24:11 PM

Green Forest Middle School's EAST Eco Team is the first school in Arkansas to be awarded the National Wildlife Federation Bronze Eco-School Award.

Green Forest EAST Eco Team is the first school in Arkansas to be awarded the National Wildlife Federation Bronze and Silver Eco-School Awards.  Eco-Schools is an internationally acclaimed program that provides a framework to help educators integrate sustainable principles throughout their schools and curriculum. Eco-Schools is currently being implemented by 46 delegations in 47 countries around the world, involving 30,000 schools, 8 million students, 400,000 teachers and 4,000 local authorities. In December 2008, the National Wildlife Federation was granted Eco-School host status for K-12 schools in the United States.

Green Forest Middle School's EAST Received the NWF Silve and Bronze Star Eco School Achievement Awards for their work with recycling, composting, greenhouse gardening and many other projects.

Green Forest's EAST students have engaged in a wide range of sustainable and ecological projects that meet the ECO-Schools standards for these award levels.  In cooperation with the Carroll County Waste Authority, EAST members and the Middle School student council members have developed a district wide program to recycle, metal,  paper and plastic.  Through a $1,500 grant students researched and ordered recycling containers and equipment to aid in collection and processing of materials on a daily basis.  Beginning in January of 2011 Green Forest School District has recycled ten tons of material.

 An additional $4,746.94 grant from Arkansas Game and Fish Commission allowed EAST members to build two outdoor classrooms containing a composter, bird baths, bird feeders, and rain barrels to capture precipitation and water our schoolyard habitat reducing the district water bill.   A weather station has also been added to monitor past, current and future weather conditions.  We hope to add software that will allow us to set alarms for various severe weather conditions warnings and distribute our weather information to the National Weather Service.  This isa matter of importance since Green Forest has been hit by two devastating tornados in the past.

  A $2,500 ADE Healthy school Grant allowed EAST member to expand our hydroponic greenhouse that supplies vegetables for our cafeteria salad bar. EAST members are currently adding solar panels and developing thermal exchange devices to cool and heat the green house for year round food production.  

Our EAST ECO team hopes to capture the highest NWF Eco-School Green Flag Award in the near future.

The Eco-Schools program is designed in a way that:

  • Improves academic performance, especially in science and math.
  • Leads to financial savings for schools.
  • Decreases the school's carbon footprint through practical solutions that reduce energy and water consumption.
  • Reduces school waste and conserves natural resources.
  • Encourages student environmental awareness and stewardship.
  • Increases parental involvement.
  • Helps students and teachers develop stronger relationships with their communities.
  • Develops national and international links.

To learn more about this program, or to join the Eco-School program, please visit http://www.nwf.org/Global-Warming/School-Solutions/Eco-Schools-USA.aspx It's a great way to involve your EAST program and students into EAST's national theme of Sustainability and Energy.

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