Let’s Get Every Kid in a Park

Green Strides Design


          U.S. Department of Education

   Green Strides

In the News


Let’s Get Every Kid in a Park

President Obama is committed to giving every kid the chance to explore America’s great outdoors and unique history. That’s why he launched the Every Kid in a Park initiative, to help get all children to visit and enjoy the outdoors. Starting in September, every fourth-grader in the nation will receive an “Every Kid in a Park” pass that’s good for free admission to all of America’s federal lands and waters — for them and their families — for a full year. Many children don’t visit these places because they can’t get there easily, so federal resources will be available to help schools and families arrange field trips and visits by providing key trip-planning tools, and helping to cover transportation costs for schools with the greatest financial need.  Learn more at this fact sheet. >>>>


ED to Announce 2015 Honorees on Earth Day, April 22nd

Each year, U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools (ED-GRS) asks state authorities to send their highest performing nominees (up to five PK-12 schools or districts and one postsecondary institution) in three broad areas that we call Pillars.  Pillar I is “Reducing Environmental Impact and Costs,” including waste, water, greenhouse gases, energy, and alternative transportation.  Pillar II is “Improving Health and Wellness,” including physical activity, nutrition, and environmental health.  Pillar III is “Teaching Effective Environmental Education, including STEM, civics, and green careers.  These few selectees help us to communicate promising practices and resources that all schools can employ in our Green Strides newsletter, social media, and tour.  The federal review and selection process is underway!  Secretary of Education Arne Duncan’s announcement of the 2015 honorees will be made available on the Department’s YouTube site at 2pm ET on April 22, 2015. >>>>


Upcoming Events


International School Meals Day is Thursday, March 5, 2015

For the last two years, schools around the world have celebrated International School Meals Day. Among the aims of International School Meals Day are to: raise awareness of the importance of the nutritional quality of school meal programs worldwide; emphasize the connection between healthy eating, education and better learning; connect children around the world to foster healthy eating habits and promote well-being in schools; share success stories of school meal programs around the globe; and raise awareness of the hunger and poverty issues being addressed through school feeding programs. In 2015 the theme is “Celebrating Culture through Food,” encouraging children to connect with each other and share their food experiences, stories, and news about food and the part it plays in their lives. To participate, you can join the #BigSchoolLunch conversation on Twitter or connect via Skype with a classroom in another part of the world. >>>>


National Healthy Schools Day is April 7th, 2015

Since 2002, parents, teachers, school nurses, custodians, advocates, and agencies have promoted National Healthy Schools Day activities nationwide. Whether you are at the beginning stages of investigating school environments or have an established Indoor Air/ Environmental Quality program, you are invited to host a local activity that educates others and celebrates your school’s successes. National Healthy Schools Day is coordinated by Healthy Schools Network in partnership with many agencies and organizations. National Healthy Schools Day promotes the use of EPA's IAQ Tools for Schools guidance as well as other EPA environmental health guidelines and programs for schools and children’s health.  >>>>


Endangered Species Day is May 15, 2015

Zoos, aquariums, botanic gardens, wildlife refuges, conservation groups, national parks, museums, and schools throughout the country will hold tours, open houses, special presentations, exhibits, milkweed plantings/butterfly garden installations, habitat clean-ups/other restoration events, children’s activities and more on May 15, that weekend and throughout May. Participate in a local event or take action individually. >>>>


USA Science and Engineering Festival is April 15-17th, 2016 in Washington, DC

The fourth biennial USA Science and Engineering Festival, featuring more than 1,000 participating corporations and organizations and over 3,000 hands-on exhibits and stage shows, will take place April 15-17, 2016, in Washington, D.C.  The festival will feature several contests for K-12 students.  Currently, the Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer (ENIAC) Classroom Design Prize challenges students to design creative strategies for engaging more women in computer science and science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields by altering classroom environments. >>>>


The Green Apple Day of Service is September 26, 2015

Every year, thousands of students, teachers, and parents around the world make their schools safer, healthier, and more efficient by participating in the Green Apple Day of Service, a global initiative organized by the Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council.  U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools honorees often host projects, rallying their local communities to stay engaged.  You can have an impact by doing things now that will help make your school a better place to learn and work this fall. Start planning your school’s Green Apple Day of Service day for the fall, or any time of year. Check out project ideas, pick up helpful event resources, read up on last year's successes, or find an event in your community. >>>>


Grants, Contests and Awards

Apply for the Presidential Innovation Award for Environmental Educators by March 13

Are you a teacher, or do you know an outstanding teacher who uses innovative approaches to teach environmental and sustainability education? The EPA recognizes outstanding K-12th grade teachers who integrate environmental education through innovative, place-based and experiential learning approaches and use the environment as a context for learning in public school programs across the country.  Apply by March 13, 2015 to win cash awards for professional development and to fund environmental education. >>>>


Submit to the Department of Energy BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge by March 20

Calling all innovative teachers – are you interested in helping advance America’s clean energy future?  Are you looking for a real-world challenge for your students? Do you want to integrate technology and social media into your lesson?  If you answered yes to any of these questions, then join the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge, where 9-12th grade student teams use technology to learn about bioenergy. In this challenge, student teams research, interpret, apply, and then design an infographic that responds to one of four bioenergy topics.  Selected infographics are promoted nationally on the BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge Map and via social media. >>>>



Mar.   3, 2015, 2:00 – 3:30 p.m.         ENERGY STAR and Green Building Rating Systems (EPA)                      

Mar. 4, 2015, 1:00 – 2:30 p.m.           Indoor Air Quality Guidelines for School Building Upgrades (EPA)                       

Mar. 5, 2015, 2:00 – 3:30 p.m.           ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager Checklist (EPA)

Mar. 10, 2015, 1:00 – 2:00 p.m.         Making Change: Farm to School Policy (NFSN)

Mar. 12, 2015, 1:00 – 2:00 p.m.         Indoor Air Quality: Saving Money While Protecting Health (EPA)

Mar. 12, 2015, 1:00 – 2:30 p.m.          Portfolio Manager Office Hours (EPA)

Mar. 19, 2015, 3:00 – 4:00 p.m.          Energy is Everywhere (DOE)            

Mar. 24, 2015, 1:00 – 2:30 p.m.         Portfolio Manager 101 (EPA)

Mar. 25, 2015, 12:00 – 1:30 p.m.        Portfolio Manager 201 (EPA)

Mar. 25, 2015, 1:30 – 2:30 p.m.          Safe Schools by Design (EFC)

Mar. 26, 2015, 1:00 – 2:30 p.m.          How to Apply for the ENERGY STAR (EPA)


Connect with Green Strides on the Web

Green Strides: Environment, Health and Facilities at ED
ED-Green Ribbon Schools
Twitter: @EDGreenRibbon
Sign up for Green Strides updates here.