Green Schools


STEAM, Healthy Schools, and The Office of Educational Facilities Proudly Support Green Schools

Florida has an established green school state network, and beginning in 2011, also joined the national Green Ribbon School Initiative.

The Florida Green School Network acts as a central clearinghouse for the green school movement in the state of Florida and supports Florida Statute 1000.08. It was designed to recognize and support green school initiatives at the school and school district level and to aid them in adopting practices that will conserve natural resources, promote sustainability and reduce operating costs.

Florida's Green School Network currently recognizes seven school districts and numerous schools for their outstanding achievements.

Districts and Achievement Level

  1. Alachua County Public Schools – Silver
  2. Brevard Public Schools - Bronze
  3. Duval County Public Schools – Gold
  4. FAU Lab School District – Gold
  5. School District of Indian River County – Silver
  6. Martin County School District – Silver
  7. The School District of Palm Beach County - Gold

FDOE works closely with school districts, sister agencies and partners to create empowering opportunities both in and outside the classroom for students and staff to grow into environmental champions and gain the skills they need to flourish as future leaders. Trane Technologies is a valued partner of the Green School District program (GSD) and will sponsor the first virtual GSD Recognition Webinar on July 14, 2020.

Florida Green School District Recognition Opportunity

The Florida Green School Network is eager to recognize school district efforts to reduce environmental impacts and costs, improve the health and wellness of students and staff and provide effective environmental and sustainability education. The application can be accessed at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/2020FloridaGreenSchoolDistricts and must be submitted by September 28, 2020.

Florida Department of Environmental Protection Green Apple Schools

Current Green Apple Schools are highlighted and new schools can apply at: https://floridadep.gov/osi/green-school-designation

Schools and districts interested in being recognized as a U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School or Green Ribbon Schools District Sustainability Awardee are required to participate in the state's green recognition programs as a prerequisite.

The Green Ribbon Schools program is a national initiative implemented through the U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools (USED-GRS) Program. The USED-GRS recognition award honors schools, districts and postsecondary institutions that are exemplary in reducing environmental impact and costs; improving the health and wellness of students and staff; and providing effective environmental and sustainability education, which incorporates science, mathematics, technology, civic skills and green career pathways. The recognition award is part of a larger U.S. Department of Education (USED) effort to identify and disseminate knowledge about practices that are proven to result in improved student engagement, higher academic achievement and graduation rates, and workforce preparedness, as well as a government wide goal of increasing energy independence and economic security. The award is accorded for one year only and is non-renewable.

All states are invited able to nominate up to five prekindergarten through 12 grade school or district candidates and one postsecondary institutionthat have shown significant progress in achieving success in the programs three pillars: 1) environmental impact and energy efficiency, 2) healthy school environments, and 3) environmental and sustainability education. Basic information about the national initiative can be found at: U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools.

The 2020-2021 Florida Green Ribbon School and District Application will be sent to eligible schools and districts in the fall. Motivating and helpful district and school awardee innovative strategies and best practices can be found at: http://www2.ed.gov/programs/green-ribbon-schools/awards.html.

United States Department of Education Awarded Florida GRS Schools and Districts

2020 – Ninth Annual U. S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools and District Sustainability Recognition

On the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, April 22, 2020, Florida’s nominee for 2020 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools award, Highland Elementary was announced as one in only 39 designated throughout the nation.

Highland Elementary School is a Title I school, nestled between Interstate 95 and Tenth Avenue North, serving a student body that is 96 percent eligible for free and reduced price lunch. Situated along The Lake Worth Lagoon in Palm Beach County, students have tremendous opportunities to gain an understanding of the water cycle, erosion, weathering, and continental drift. There is scientific evidence on campus to prove that the land where Highland Elementary School is located was once underwater and eroded over time to form the top of a sand dune; hence the name “Highland.” Even today, students participating in nature walks on campus come across seashells within the soil. Highland’s green team and over 1,000 students have worked together with school administration to also overhaul grounds enhancement, sustainability, health/well-being, curriculum integration, school-wide green culture, and community involvement. To learn more about their accomplishments, preview the Highland Elementary Nomination Package.

Congratulations are also extended to Martin County School District (MCSD) for being designated as one of only 11 districts designated as a prestigious 2020 U.S. Department of Education District Sustainability awardee. MCSD demonstrates commitment to the three ED-GRS Pillars on a daily basis with innovative efforts that have been recognized at local, state, and national levels. Coordinated by Florida Atlantic University’s Pine Jog Environmental Education Center, the regional Green Schools Recognition Program honors local schools that have taken a holistic and innovative approach to greening their campuses and academic programs. Their efforts include school grounds enhancement, resource conservation, environmental curriculum connections, community involvement, and a school-wide commitment to sustainability. To learn more about their accomplishments, preview the Martin County School District Nomination Package.

Highlights and pictures featuring all 2020 awardees can be found at U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools 2020 Highlights.

2019 – Eighth Annual U. S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools and District Sustainability Recognition

On May 22, 2019, Florida’s nominee for 2019 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools award, MAST Academy was announced as one in only 25 designated throughout the nation. MAST Academy is a top 100 nationally ranked public high school in Miami, Florida, located on Biscayne Bay with a marine stewardship theme. MAST artfully engages students, families, staff and the community in their green school initiatives. To learn more about their accomplishments, preview the MAST Nomination Package.

Congratulations are also extended to FAU Lab School District for being designated as one of only 14 districts designated as a prestigious 2019 U.S. Department of Education District Sustainability awardee. At FAU Lab School District, campus growth and culture have been an evolution creating a sense of normality for the lifestyle in which students and staff “Go Green.” A passion for the environment lives in students allowing them to learn and grow, both physically and metaphorically, in a green culture that is not merely something achieved for acknowledgements and awards. Students and staff are encouraged to live their lives inside and outside of school as kinder and more ecologically-aware citizens. To learn more about their accomplishments, preview the FAU Lab District Nomination Package.

Highlights and pictures featuring all 2019 awardees can be found at U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools 2019 Highlights.

2018 – Seventh Annual U. S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools Recognition

On May 16, 2018, one Florida school received the 2018 Green Ribbon Schools award by the U.S. Department of Education. Gove Elementary School in Palm Beach County was recognized as a 2018 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School Awardee. Only ­­­­46 schools across the nation received this prestigious Green Ribbon Schools award in 2018 along with six districts and six postsecondary institutions. Gove Elementary School fully embraces the connection between student achievement and a healthy learning environment.

Congratulations to Gove Elementary School for their efforts to reduce environmental costs, improve the health and wellness of students and staff, and provide learning opportunities focused on the environment that incorporate science, mathematics, technology, civic skills, and green pathways. Highlights from the 2018 awardees can be found at: https://www2.ed.gov/programs/green-ribbon-schools/highlights-2018.pdf

2017 - Sixth Annual Green Ribbon Schools Recognition

On April 24, 2017, one Florida district and four Florida schools received the prestigious national Green Ribbon Schools designation by the U.S. Department of Education. Duval County School District was recognized as a 2017 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools District Sustainability Awardee. Air Base K-8 Center, Castle Creek Elementary, Surfside Elementary and Wilton Manors Elementary schools were recognized as 2017 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools for their efforts to reduce environmental costs, improve the health and wellness of students and staff, and provide learning opportunities focused on the environment that incorporate science, mathematics, technology, civic skills, and green pathways.

Only ­­­­nine districts and 45 schools across the nation received this distinguished Green Ribbon Schools award in 2017. This school district and these schools fully embrace the connection between student achievement and a healthy learning environment.

2016 - Fifth Annual Green Ribbon Schools Recognition

2016 - Fifth Annual Green Ribbon Schools Recognition

Alachua and Orange County School Districts were designated as 2016 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools District Sustainability Awardees. Beachside Montessori Village School in Broward County was designated as a 2016 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School. Only ­­­­15 districts and 47 schools across the nation received this distinguished Green Ribbon School award in 2016.

Alachua County Public Schools, Florida

Orange County School District, Florida

Beachside Montessori Village, Hollywood, Broward County

2015 - Fourth Annual Green Ribbon Schools Recognition

On Earth Day, three Florida schools received the prestigious national Green Ribbon Schools designation by the U.S. Department of Education. The award recognized Manatee Elementary School and Odyssey Charter School in Brevard County and Pine View School for the Gifted in Sarasota County for their efforts to reduce environmental costs, improve the health and wellness of students and staff, and provide learning opportunities focused on the environment that incorporate science, mathematics, technology, civic skills, and green pathways. Only fifty-eight schools across the nation received this distinguished Green Ribbon School award in 2015.

Manatee Elementary School, Brevard County District Schools

Odyssey Charter School, Brevard County School District

Pine View School for the Gifted, Sarasota County District Schools

2014 - Third Annual Green Ribbon Schools Recognition Program

The Broward County School District was one of only nine districts in the nation receiving the prestigious Green Ribbon Schools District Sustainability Award.

2013 - Second Annual Green Ribbon Schools Recognition Program

Two Florida schools were among 64 schools in the nation awarded. The USED spotlighted their exemplary efforts in making their schools healthier, safer, more cost efficient, and sustainable for all to emulate.

One Florida district out of only 14 school districts in the nation was selected to receive the inaugural Green Ribbon Schools District Sustainability Award.

2012-Inaugural National Green Ribbon Schools Recognition Program

Three Florida schools were among 78 schools in 29 states named as 2012 Green Ribbon Schools by the U.S. Department of Education.

Contacts

Nichole Wilder
Acting Director, Healthy Schools
325 West Gaines Street, Suite 444
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0400
Phone: 850-245-0813
Penny.Taylor@fldoe.org

PJ Duncan
STEAM Director
Bureau of Standards and Instructional Support
325 W. Gaines Street, Suite 424
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0400
Phone: 850-245-0808
Patricia.Duncan@fldoe.org

Don S. Whitehead, AIA
Safe and Efficient Facilities Design Manager
Office of Educational Facilities
325 West Gaines Street, Suite 1054
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0400
Phone: 850-245-9295