Cedar Rapids Community Schools Presents First Green Team

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The District celebrated the accomplishments of the school teams with the first "Green Team Awards."

The District is promoting a “green movement.” Green Teams have so far been formed at 23 schools, bringing together students, staff, and community members committed to making positive environmental changes in their schools, communities and daily lives. The District celebrated the accomplishments of the school teams on May 20 with the first “Green Team Awards.”

In kicking off the event, Superintendent Dr. Dave Benson, announced that the school district has won the 2014 “Best School Recycling Program” Award from the Iowa Recycling Association! The award recognizes programs and projects exhibiting cutting-edge recycling practices. 

“The creation and implementation of the Green Teams led directly to this honor,” Benson noted. “Your actions are helping to create passionate and thoughtful leaders for the future who will make environmentally-conscious decisions that will create a better world for us all.”

2014 Green Team Awards were presented to the following school teams:

The Alliant Energy Award for Energy Conservation was presented to the school showing exceptional energy conservation initiatives. The award – a commemorative plaque and a tree planted at the school - was presented to Hoover Elementary School.

Hoover students created green trivia posters which were posted in the hallway to the cafeteria, they posted signs in halls and by all light switches, they tracked and shared data with the students and staff through announcements, assemblies, emails and green bulletin boards. Hoover has reduced energy consumption by 12.32% compared to the previous year.

The Shive Hattery Visionary Views Award was awarded to a school team that designed and implemented a conservation strategy including energy, water, or recycling efforts. The award - $500 for the purchase of teaching and learning materials – went to Kennedy High School.

A “commingle program” was implemented at Kennedy in the fall of 2013, adding recycle bins throughout the hallways and in each classroom, even adding recycle bins to the cafeteria and gymnasium. The school team also conducted a Food Waste Audit to decrease the amount of waste.

The Recycle More Environmental Award from City Carton was presented to the school that demonstrated outstanding performance in the environmental field. The winning team – from Jefferson High School - will receive a park bench made from recycled materials.

Jefferson students created a power point presentation showing their recycling efforts and shared it with the entire student population and staff. The school community has reduced the amount of trash going to the landfill by 60 yards per week and increased their recyclables to include more than just paper and cardboard.

The iGreenCR Award for water conservation was presented by the City of Cedar Rapids to the school demonstrating outstanding performance in water conservation. Taft Middle School was named the winner and recipient of a new water fountain/bottle filler.

Taft took a pro-active approach to water conservation by meeting with the District Food and Nutrition Manager to discuss water usage in the cafeteria. The team also created presentations to share at the school Open House, announcements with quizzes and prizes, and newsletters, posters and emails.

The Quaker Oats Green Award was presented to the school team demonstrating outstanding green initiatives during the current school year, including energy reduction, energy education, and recycling efforts. Hoover Elementary School received the award, an engraved plaque.

Hoover students created a rap song about conservation, identified classroom ambassadors, made recycled holiday ornaments, installed a green bucks program, and designed posters and bulletin boards to further educate students and staff.

Green Team Participation Awards, recognizing schools showing at least a 5% reduction in utility, as well as the implementation of a commingle recycling program, went to the teams from Kenwood Elementary School, Taft Middle School, Van Buren Elementary School, Grant Elementary School, Truman Elementary School, Harding Middle School, Johnson Elementary School, Hiawatha Elementary School, Garfield Elementary School, and Harrison Elementary School.

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