Press Release: 2019-06-24
Massachusetts Environmental Officials Present ‘Green Team’ Awards to Massachusetts Schools
BOSTON — State environmental officials today recognized students from 72 schools across the Commonwealth for outstanding environmental actions as members of the “Green Team,” a statewide environmental education program sponsored by the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP).
“Congratulations to the teachers and students who participated in the Green Team program during the past school year, showing that there’s a new generation of enthusiasm and environmental leadership in Massachusetts communities,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Kathleen Theoharides. “Participation in Green Team activities is an important educational foundation that helps students take action to protect our natural resources, and brings to life the subjects they are learning in school.”
Students of any age can participate in the Green Team program, an initiative composed of students who share the goals of reducing pollution and protecting the environment. More than 82,000 students in 351 classes at 322 schools joined the Green Team this school year.
Students took part in a range of activities, including:
- Expanding school recycling programs;
- Collecting textiles for donation and recycling;
- Starting a compost pile using organic waste from the school cafeteria, and using the compost it generates to nourish a garden to grow vegetables;
- Making their school driveways “Idle-Free Zones”;
- Increasing energy efficiency in their schools and communities; and
- Reducing their carbon footprint at school and at home.
These activities incorporated classroom disciplines from the fields of science, engineering and mathematics to reading, writing and art, as well as other non-classroom, interrelated projects.
“Green Team students learn environmental stewardship, bringing energy conservation, recycling, composting and pollution prevention projects to our schools and communities,” said MassDEP Commissioner Martin Suuberg. “Green Team members work to have a positive impact on our environment and to make their communities more sustainable.”
Participating teachers received a Green Team Kit containing classroom posters, lesson plans, recycling tips and access to a library of other resources. In addition, 51 schools received recycling equipment from the Green Team to initiate or expand school recycling programs. Fifteen schools received signs reading “Idle-Free Zone” from the Green Team that serve as a visual reminder to drivers to turn off their engines while waiting in the schoolyard.
Participating classes were entered into a drawing for prizes, and 72 classes received prizes for their efforts (full listing below). Seventeen schools won grand prizes, and will receive schoolwide performances by environmental educators Jack Golden and Peter O’Malley, or gift cards to local garden centers for trees or garden supplies to further “green” their schools.
To learn more or to participate in the 2019-20 school year, the 18th year for the Green Team, teachers may sign up online here.
The following are the Green Team prize winners: