Monday, April 23, 2012

Tahoma Junior High wins national honor . . .

The announcement from Education Secretary Duncan today identifying Tahoma Junior High as one of 78 schools across the country being recognized as a Green Ribbon School was a proud moment for me. Under the leadership of Nancy Skerritt we have made our environment a focus for integrated study across the grades. She and T&L staff have supported teachers in creating units of study that identify local, regional, and international issues of significance in our interactions with the environment. We use this content to focus on our Outcomes and Indicators, to engage young people in problem solving and critical thinking, and to create a deeper understanding of the need for sustainable practices locally and across the world.

On the energy saving side Lori Cloud with support from McKinstry has provided leadership and support to principals and building Green Teams who are the real force behind the changes in practice. Our schools and the school system are committed to continuing this quest for more energy efficient practices as demonstrated by our progress in the King County Schools Program and by the award announcement today for Tahoma Junior High.

The two components of educating for sustainability and energy savings are the foundation for this award. What makes it even more significant for the Junior High is that this is the first year for the award meaning they will always be among the FIRST to achieve this recognition.

From Secretary Duncan's news release.

"Science, environmental and outdoor education play a central role in providing children with a well-rounded education, helping prepare them for the jobs of the future," said U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. "U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools demonstrate compelling examples of the ways schools can help children build real-world skillsets, cut school costs, and provide healthy learning environments."

Many thanks to Rob, the students, and the staff for their commitment and congratulations on this very significant federal honor!

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