Florida Green School Awards
Presented by FPL
Mark your calendars and get to West Palm Beach for the 2011 Florida Green School Awards dinner presented by FPL. Be prepared to be wowed by the exciting efforts taking place in the K-12 world in this great state. The awards dinner is on the eve of the Learn Green Conference where educators will learn best practices in operations and curricula.
You can register for the dinner at Florida's Foundation.
We will also induct the first FPL Sustainable Legacy Award winner - Pine Jog Elementary in West Palm Beach! Pine Jog Elementary, a previous Green School Award-winning finalist, created a school recycling program titled Growing Up Green. The program was also involved with Terracycle and earned the school a $450 rebate for turning in juice pouches, candy wrappers and zip lock bags. Pine Jog collected old shoes for Shoes for The Cure and 87 pounds of pop tops for the Ronald McDonald House. They reused trash and plastic bottles to make planters and musical instruments. This year alone, the school saved 482,000 gallons of water and reduced waste by 2,180 cubic yards.
2011 Florida Green School Award Finalists
- Celeste Norup teaches at Bessey Creek Elementary School in Jensen Beach and is involved with the students in the school's Green Club. Their recycling initiatives have reduced trash consumption at the school by one-third and motivated the families of students and staff to recycle at home.
- Madeline Cowen and Larissa Weinstein made an impact as co-presidents in Gables Earth Environmental Club under the guidance of their teacher, Jenny Lopez-Ponce of Coral Gables Senior High School. They helped create a mural behind the school's new butterfly garden, were involved in the expansion of the school's recycling program, and have both been featured in a film titled "Young Voices on Climate Change."
- Monica Dyches is a student leader in reducing the carbon footprint at Miami Palmetto Senior High School. She participated in the planting of native trees and the removal of non-native species in the school's half-acre area of pine flat woods and assisted in raising money to help Haiti plant trees to lower their own carbon footprint.
- Deb Wagner is a 4th grade teacher at St. Paul Lutheran School who, along with her students, has been working to lessen the school's environmental footprint with students planting 80 trees to help prevent soil erosion and restore habitat that was destroyed by a road project.
- Peter Jordan is a returning finalist and teacher at Ocoee High School who guided the student-led project, Ocoee Green, which encourages student leadership and environmental stewardship in the community. Their project focused on composting, organic vegetable farming, recycling, water catchment, hydroponics and vermiculture.
- Ray Cruze is an agriculture teacher at Roosevelt Academy who implemented the program, Roosevelt Farms. This program teaches children with learning disabilities how to grow and maintain crops without using harmful chemicals, while also conserving water.
- Josh Clearman led his class in creating a green learning environment at Key West High School. With his guidance, his class produced power via a wind turbine, reduced carbon emissions, planted trees, saved more than 1,000 gallons of water, produced 100 gallons of biodiesel and recycled 1,000 gallons of oil.
- Deborah Pate is in charge of the Suter Energy Savers of A.K. Suter Elementary School. She incorporated green learning activities into her daily lessons including alternative energy awareness, constructing a solar house, using a solar oven and creating a wind turbine.
- Wendy Doromal of Timber Creek High School implemented a service learning theme at her school. She raised awareness of environmental issues by leading a school-wide recycling program, preserving habitats, protecting endangered species, and conserving energy and water.
- Learning Gate Community School lives by the motto "Nature Is Our Best Teacher" and uses their achieved LEED (Leadership in Environmental and Energy Design) Platinum certified building as a teaching tool.
- Lawton Chiles Elementary School brought out the environmental stewardship in their students and staff members. This school's recycling efforts have diverted 2,500 pounds of material from entering the landfill each week.
- David Lawrence Jr. K-8 Center saved $76,000 by reducing their energy waste. Students led projects supporting sustainable technology including a solar powered waterfall and a noise detection device with LED bulbs.
- Pinellas County used a district energy management plan to define a set of standards for school waste reduction. The plan emphasized practical training, reducing energy usage and enlarging recycling programs. Each school had green teams and campus litter patrols to implement the recycling programs.
- Duval County started the Green Champions program, which consisted of reducing operating costs, eliminating waste, conserving natural resources, and incorporating sustainability into the curriculum.
- Charlotte County's approach to energy conservation management used a simple program called "As Easy as One, Two, Three." Its objectives were to save cost, keep buildings safe from environmental harm and maintain an optimal education environment.
Get your tickets today - simply complete the online form. Dinner tickets are $45. You can get a reservation at the West Palm Beach Marriott where the dinner will take place. Finalists - who are being contacted individually - will receive two complimentary dinner tickets and one night's stay at the hotel.