Green Ribbon Schools Resource Guide

This guide has been complied to help assist with specific questions that are on the Green Ribbon application. It is provided to assist with resources in determining your answers to some questions and Pillars. If you prefer an Adobe PDF Version of this page is available here.

Q CC1:  Is your school participating in a nationally recognized green school program which asks you to benchmark progress in some fashion (for example, USGBC LEED for Schools, Green Globes, Project Learning Tree's Green Schools, or National Wildlife Federation Eco-Schools USA)?

Q CC2:  Has your school, staff or student body received any awards for environmental or sustainability stewardship/action?

US Green Building Council’s Center for Green Schools http://www.centerforgreenschools.org/home.aspx

Earth Day Network’s Green Schools Program
http://edu.earthday.org/

Green School Alliance Green
http://www.greenschoolsalliance.org/

National Wildlife Federation’s Eco-Schools USA
http://www.nwf.org/Global-Warming/School-Solutions/Eco-Schools-USA.aspx

Collaborative for High Performance Schools CHPS Recognition Programs
http://www.chps.net/dev/Drupal/node/211

Project Learning Tree’s
http://pltgreenschools.org/

Pillar 1: Reduced Environmental Impact

Q 1A3:  Has your school constructed a new building or renovated an existing building in the past ten years?
EPA’s Guidelines for Energy Management
http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=guidelines.guidelines_index

Q 1A5:  Please indicate which green building practices your school is using to ensure your building is energy efficient.
EPA’s Guidelines for Energy Management = Same as above
http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=guidelines.guidelines_index

Q 1A5:  Please indicate which green building practices your school is using to ensure your building is energy efficient.
EPA’s Portfolio Manager
http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=evaluate_performance.bus_portfoliomanager

Q 1A5:  Please indicate which green building practices your school is using to ensure your building is energy efficient.
DOE’s Purchasing Specifications for Energy Efficient Products
http://www1.eere.energy.gov/femp/technologies/eep_purchasingspecs.html


Q 1A6:  Has your school received EPA ENERGY STAR certification or does it meet the requirements for ENERGY STAR certification?
DOE and EPS’s Energy Star for K-12 Districts
http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=k12_schools.bus_schoolsk12

Q 1A7:  Has your school reduced its total non-transportation energy use from an initial baseline?  
EPS’s Portfolio Manager
http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=evaluate_performance.bus_portfoliomanager

Q 1A7:  Has your school reduced its total non-transportation energy use from an initial baseline?  
DOE’s Better Building Manager
http://www1.eere.energy.gov/buildings/betterbuildings/

Q 1A7:  Has your school reduced its total non-transportation energy use from an initial baseline?
ASHRAE’s Energy Design: K-12 Schools
http://www.ashrae.org/publications/page/aedg50pct

Q 1A8:  What percentage of your school's energy is obtained from:  On-site renewable energy generation (i.e. solar, wind, biomass) or Purchased renewable energy
State Incentives for Renewable Energy database
http://www.dsireusa.org/

Q 1A9:  Can your school demonstrate a reduction in its Greenhouse Gas emissions?
Clean Air Cool Planet’s Campus Carbon Calculator
http://www.cleanair-coolplanet.org/toolkit/inv-calculator.php

Q 1B1:  What percentage of your students walk, bike, bus, or carpool (2 + student in the car) to/from school?
Carpool to School
https://www.carpooltoschool.com/Home.aspx

Q 1B3:  Which of the following policies or programs has your school implemented:

EPA’s Clean School Bus USA
http://epa.gov/cleanschoolbus/index.htm

DOT’s Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety
http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/ped_bike/

Safe Routes to Schools
http://www.saferoutesinfo.org/

Q 1B4:  Describe how your school transportation use is efficient and environmentally benign (e.g. the percentage of school-owned electric/hybrid/alternative fuel vehicles in your fleet, or other indicators of significant reductions in emissions).
Collaborative for High Performance Schools’ Transportation Plan
http://www.chps.net/dev/Drupal/node/516

Q 1C1:  Can you demonstrate a reduction in your school's total water consumption (measured in gallons/occupant) from an initial baseline?
EPA’s Energy Star Benchmarking Kit
http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=evaluate_performance.bus_portfoliomanager_benchmarking

Q 1C2:  Which of the following practices does your school employ to increase water efficiency and ensure water quality?
EPA’s Watersense Outdoor water use
http://www.epa.gov/WaterSense/pubs/outdoor.html

Q 1C3:  Our school's drinking water comes from:
EPA’S Drinking Water In Schools
http://water.epa.gov/infrastructure/drinkingwater/schools/index.cfm

Q 1D1:  What percentage of solid waste is diverted from landfilling or incinerating due to reuse, recycling and/or composting (i.e. Recycling Rate)?
EPA’S Wastewise Re-TRAC
http://www.epa.gov/epawaste/partnerships/wastewise/retrac.htm

EPA’s Tools to Reduce Waste in Schools
http://www.epa.gov/epawaste/education/toolkit.htm

Waste Free Lunches
http://www.wastefreelunches.org/what-is-a-waste-free-lunch-program.html

Q 1D4: Which of the following benchmarks has your school implemented to minimize and safely manage hazardous waste?

CDC’s Hazardous Waste Checklist
http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/docs/2004-101/chklists/n41was~1.htm

EPA’s Design for the Environment
http://www.epa.gov/dfe/pubs/projects/formulat/formpart.htm

EPEAT
http://www.epeat.net/who-are-you/purchaser/governmentinstitutional/

Green Seals Institutional Cleaning Services Standard
http://www.greenseal.org/GreenBusiness/Standards.aspx?vid=ViewStandardDetail&cid=3&sid=30

ISSA’s Cleaning Industry/Management Standards
http://www.issa.com/?id=certified_organizations&lg=

Consortium for School Networking’s Green Computing Leadership Initiative
http://www.cosn.org/Default.aspx?TabId=4110

Q 1D5:  Does your school use "third party certified" green cleaning products?
Consumer Reports Ecolabels
http://www.greenerchoices.org/eco-labels/

Green Seal’s Green Cleaning Products
http://www.greenseal.org/FindGreenSealProductsandServices.aspx?vid=ViewProductDetail&cid=16

Ecologo’s Cleaning and Janitorial Products
http://www.ecologo.org/en/certifiedgreenproducts/category.asp?category_id=21&cat=1

EPA’s Schools Chemical Cleanout Campaign
http://www.epa.gov/epawaste/partnerships/sc3/index.htm

Pillar 2: Healthy School Environments
RESOURCES: Many of the questions under Pillar Two can be better understood and answered by using EPA’s:  Healthy Schools Environments Assessment Tool
http://www.epa.gov/schools/healthyseat/index.html

Q 2A1: Which of the following practices does your school employ with regards to pest management?

EPA’s IPM for Schools    http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/ipm/index.htm

Beyond Pesticides Model School Policy
http://www.beyondpesticides.org/schools/models/Model_Local_School_Policy.pdf

2A2: Which of the following practices does your school employ to improve contaminant control and ventilation? (Please check all that apply)

EPA’s Air Quality Tools for Schools
http://www.epa.gov/iaq/schools/index.html

EPA’s Schools and Mercury
http://www.epa.gov/mercury/schools.htm

EPA’s Managing Asthma in Schools
http://www.epa.gov/asthma/school-based.html

CDC’s Making Your School Asthma-Friendly school
http://www.cdc.gov/HealthyYouth/asthma/creatingafs/#tools

EPA’s Mold Remediation in Schools
http://www.epa.gov/mold/mold_remediation.html

CDC’s School Tobacco Use Prevention Guidelines
http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/preview/mmwrhtml/00026213.htm

EPA’s Radon Information
http://www.epa.gov/radon/index.html

Q 2B1:  Which practices does your school employ to promote nutrition, physical activity and overall school health?
USDA’s HealthierUS School Challenge
http://www.fns.usda.gov/tn/healthierus/index.html

USDA’s Farm to school Program
http://www.fns.usda.gov/cnd/F2S/Default.htm

Green Schools Initiative’s Green Food Service
http://www.greenschools.net/display.php?uid=58&modin=54

Edible School Yard Project
http://www.edibleschoolyard.org/

The President’s Challenge
http://www.presidentschallenge.org/

The First Lady’s Let’s Move!
http://www.letsmove.gov/

EPA’s Sunrise Program
http://www.epa.gov/sunwise/

Pillar 3: Environmental and Sustainability Education
Q 3A2:  Which practices does your school employ to help ensure the environmental and sustainability literacy of your graduates?
North American Association for Environmental Education’s Guidelines for Learning (K-12)
http://eelinked.naaee.net/n/guidelines/topics/Excellence-in-EE-Guidelines-for-Learning-K-12

Green Education Foundation’s Curriculum Clearinghouse
http://www.greeneducationfoundation.org/index.php?option=com_sobi2&Itemid=567

Q 3A3:  If your school serves grades 9-12, please provide the following information:

  • Percentage of last year's eligible graduates who completed the AP Environmental Science course during their high school career
  • Percentage of these students who scored a 3 or higher on the AP Environmental Science exam

Advanced Placement’s Environmental Science
http://www.collegeboard.com/student/testing/ap/sub_envsci.html

Q 3B1:  Do your school's science courses frequently use sustainability and the environment as a context for learning science (such as asking questions, developing and using models, planning and carrying out investigations, analyzing and interpreting data, using mathematics and computational thinking, constructing explanations, and engaging in argument from evidence when exploring environmental and sustainability issues)?
State Education & Environment Roundtable (SEER)
http://www.seer.org/

Q 3B5:  If your school is a high school, does your school curriculum make connections between classroom and college and career readiness, in particular post-secondary options in environmental and sustainability fields?
Sample Green CTE Course
http://www.k12.wa.us/EnvironmentSustainability/Curriculum/OutlineCTEGreenSustainableDesignandTechCourse.pdf

Q 3C1:  Do students conduct an age-appropriate, self-selected, civic/community engagement project at every grade level?
Sample Civic Engagement Skills Assessment
http://s3.amazonaws.com/usp_site_uploads/resources/166/Assessment_Tool_for_the_Green_Ribbon_Schools.pdf