Sixteen schools in Bend recently earned Oregon Green School Certification for their efforts to reduce resource consumption by implementing student led projects focused on waste reduction, energy and water conservation in the 2015-2016 school year.
Oregon Green Schools is a statewide program that recognizes schools’ outstanding waste reduction and recycling efforts. Schools must apply and qualify for the award by demonstrating the efforts they make to reduce waste within their schools. Amity Creek Elementary, Rosland Elementary, Lava Ridge Elementary, and Juniper Elementary all renewed their Entry Level award. New Entry Level schools included: Pacific Crest Middle, Cascade Middle, Silver Rail Elementary, Westside Village Elementary, W.E. Miller Elementary, Pine Ridge Elementary, Bear Creek Elementary and Cascades Academy of Central Oregon. REALMS Middle School and Highland Elementary were officially the first Merit Level Green School in Central Oregon. They earned this status through their continual efforts to incorporate educational components into the regular curriculum, and special projects that included all students and staff at the schools.
To celebrate their success, a culmination event and awards ceremony was held at Westside Village School on May 11, 2016. Approximately 250 students, teachers and parents attended the celebration. Each school shared displays including slideshows and movies made to demonstrate some of the projects they accomplished during the school year. Students then explored the “Reclaimed, Renewed and Rethinking Resource Fair,” where they made key fobs from old bike chains, re-purposed crayons, screen printed T-shirts, fused plastic with Sara Bella Upcycling, planted seeds, made paper and more.
The Oregon Green School Program will continue next year and Jackie Wilson, Regional Coordinator and Education Director for the Environmental Center, intends to certify more schools. “When students make a difference in their own school, they learn that they are able to positively affect the environment locally and globally. When students direct their learning through projects they gain a deeper understanding and are more willing to make community changes in the future,” explained Wilson.
View Student Videos
These videos were made after our waste audit to educate our community about the do’s and don’ts of recycling.