Gallery: NYC Event: How to Green Your School – Attend Our Informative P...

Children in school today spend less time outdoors than ever before, and face increasing rates of obesity, asthma and allergies, ADHD, and other mental and behavioral health problems. At the same time, our civilization is facing catastrophic climate change, which we as a society are unequipped to deal with. So how can we improve our children’s health and well-being while also teaching them environmental literacy so that they are able to respond to looming ecological problems? How can classrooms be made less toxic and more environmentally friendly? How can school food be made healthier? With these topics in mind, Inhabitat is hosting a panel discussion at the upcoming NYC Green Festival to tackle the challenges faced by parents today when trying to choose the best education for their kids. Inhabitat’s founder and editor-in-chief Jill Fehrenbacher will be moderating the talk and will be joined by Amie Hamlin, Executive Director of New York Coalition For Healthy School Food; Aimee Arandia Østensen, 2nd Grade Teacher and Co-Leader of Go Green Committee at Manhattan Country SchoolVéronique Pittman, editor and moderator of the Green Schools Alliance (GSA) web platform; and Elea Robinson, teacher and founding faculty at the new, eco-friendly New Amsterdam School.

WHEN: Saturday April 26th @ 11:30am WHERE: NYC Green Festival, Community Stage

WIN FREE TICKETS TO THE EVENT BY SUBMITTING A QUESTION FOR OUR PANELISTS HERE >

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33 Comments

  1. Rob Watson April 24, 2014 at 11:45 am
    To Mike: The best way of reducing food waste (and also reducing water/energy use) is to eliminate trays from cafeterias.
  2. vchoa April 23, 2014 at 4:52 pm
    Hi Ron, Nice to "meet" you. Will you be at the panel on Sat? When is your next Leadership Team and PA meeting? Véronique, CIO of the Green Schools Alliance
  3. marianrita April 23, 2014 at 4:13 pm
    I am very surprised you have not invited long-time NYS and national leader on this issue, Claire Barnett, Director of the Healthy Schools Network. She is the most knowlegable person in New York on this issue. Check out their website: www.healthyschools.org
  4. mamakarenp April 11, 2014 at 4:44 pm
    they have communal snack in my son\'s class and sometimes it is junk food. at all events/parties in the class, it is junk (donuts, cookies, candy, bad juice, etc). please talk about developing a citywide initiative to ban junk food from the classroom. the school sent home a memo, written by me as a member of the nutrition committee, about bringing in healthy foods. it hasn\'t changed anything. these people need to be forced by the law!
  5. vchoa April 10, 2014 at 9:36 pm
    I hope that next time you have a panel discussion on this topic, you consider one of the 6 staff at the Green Schools Alliance, which is headquartered in NY but which was actually created by the schools themselves and counts among its members schools in 38 countries and 42 states w/ over 3000. I will be attending Green Fest and look forward to the panel. I will also be at this panel on Earth Day: http://www.nywift.org/newsletter.aspx?id=5003 and here is a bit of info about our organization:http://www.greenschoolsalliance.org/about-us Thanks Inhabitat, Veronique Pittman
  6. Sarah Weiss April 10, 2014 at 5:25 pm
    How can we make sure that the school buses that take our children to and from school every day are made to be safer for our environment and for the children that ride them?
  7. soniaw April 9, 2014 at 10:31 am
    How can we build playgrounds that better represent natural environments so children can gain a hands on experience and appreciation with the natural world.
  8. dshah April 9, 2014 at 5:31 am
    How can change in diet contribute towards green environment. As parents how can we contribute to that?
  9. IngaHanover April 8, 2014 at 6:30 pm
    Have you got some successful strategies in lobbying both governments and big business to invest in schools to create sustainable buildings for now and the future?
  10. Christian Brantner April 8, 2014 at 2:30 pm
    Schools should be leaders in green initiatives as they are educating for the future. For a school to operate at maximum potential, all members of staff need to be educated pro-active with initiatives. Is there a plan that uses a point system where schools could compete with one another? This could be energy and water consumption/student, recycling vs. garbage reduction, and the implementation of green systems or possibly growing food for lunchtime or home economics, consumption. Schools compete with one another for various things and NYC has a variety of specialty schools. Is there a plan for an environmental school, or does one already exist?
  11. lanawinter April 8, 2014 at 11:49 am
    What is it, exactly, that you feel would make a school "eco-friendly"? Many schools were built bunker-style in the 50s and 60s and are surrounded by concrete, rather than green space; how can these spaces be transformed into greener places of learning? Is there a lot of bureaucratic red tape to be sifted through to gain permission to put these green initiatives into place? Are there any issues of liability to be taken into consideration? E.g. if a child were to become ill from eating vegetables grown in the school garden, or injured somehow? Many schools, particularly those in inner-city areas, often suffer from a lack of funding: where will the resources for this greening be drawn from? PTA committees? Community donation/support? Do you think there would be opportunities for students to gain extra credit for taking part in their school's green initiatives that could then be counted towards their post-secondary education, should they choose to pursue a subject in the eco-sector?
  12. Mike Chino April 8, 2014 at 11:49 am
    What's the biggest offender when it comes to school lunches? Do you have any helpful tips for parents packing healthy lunches?
  13. Yuka Yoneda April 8, 2014 at 11:36 am
    NYC public schools are already known for having limited funds. What are some effective ways for parents and teachers to receive more funding for green initiatives in their kids' schools or to raise funds on their own?
  14. devika kumar April 7, 2014 at 10:19 am
    Other than the infrastructure Green Schools require constant monitoring of operating efficiently. Faculty, administrative and students, facilities manager all need to incorporate behavioral changes. What are the most effective ways of ensuring this? I would love to attend this event and learn more about aggressively greening schools.
  15. Fred Tupper April 4, 2014 at 10:14 pm
    Would definitly want to go
  16. Be Well Boutique NYC April 4, 2014 at 9:35 am
    It would love to go!
  17. Ramonette Dizon April 4, 2014 at 3:30 am
    How can you run a green school if your building/structure is not green/sustainable? How would this affect the concept of a school that the school should be the best example of their program? How would this explain the 'walk the talk' theory? How can you integrate a green program/ environment education for public schools or schools that are lacking in funds? How do you get parents to enroll their children in an environment-centered school? How will you compete with the well-known schools in the city? How do you solve a mindset based problem that 'there's no future in farming'? How do you get teachers if your country or city lacks environmentalists, what are the qualifications for teachers? I hope I get this I really need this because this is my thesis. Thank you :)
  18. Ramonette Dizon April 4, 2014 at 3:06 am
    How can you run a green school if your building/structure is not green/sustainable? How would this affect the concept of a school that the school should be the best example of their program? How would this explain the 'walk the talk' theory? How can you integrate a green program/ environment education for public schools or schools that are lacking in funds? How do you get parents to enroll their children in an environment-centered school? How will you compete with the well-known schools in the city? How do you solve a mindset based problem that 'there's no future in farming'? How do you get teachers if your country or city lacks environmentalists, what are the qualifications for teachers? I hope I get this I really need this because this is my thesis. Thank you :)
  19. Divine April 4, 2014 at 12:38 am
    Hi, how i would like to join but all your activities are in the USA. How do you plan to include African s Like me into the activities? We are really missing out on such nature based discussions.
  20. Erin Kurnik April 3, 2014 at 8:11 pm
    How can we get children involved with growing food (contained pots int he school yard? roof top school garden?) and learning about the necessity of sustainable agriculture in sustaining life on Earth? How can we teach children to deeply value to the eco-system and connect how the things they (or their parents) buy have an effect on ecosystems, the people involved in both obtaining the raw materials and manufacturing the item (pollution, chemicals, sweat shops, etc.) and that there are kinder, greener options? How do we teach children loving interconnectedness or what people might call global thinking so they see the big picture of how things effect one another and think globally about solutions, as they are our future trail blazers?
  21. leezalee April 3, 2014 at 5:29 pm
    Stop rewarding children from a young age in school with sugar laden foods as a reward for good behavior. Ie Cupcakes candy or cookies to celebrate good grades. It just starts a lifelong addiction to sugar which is not healthy.
  22. alysia reiner April 3, 2014 at 4:19 pm
    how do you get the administration on board? how do you get folks who are of a very different generation and belief system to care? how do you get a school chef to be interested in organics & csas when they just see it as a scary because its change, a headache and expensive - even if its most cost effective?!?!?
  23. alysia reiner April 3, 2014 at 4:18 pm
    how do you get the administration on board? how do you get folks who are of a very different generation and belief system to care? how do you get a school chef to be interested in organics & csas when they just see it as a scary because its change, a headache and expensive - even if its most cost effective!
  24. Sbrockwell April 3, 2014 at 3:11 pm
    Sounds like an awesome event....I would love to go, can Canadian educators win tickets?
  25. lilo kuo April 3, 2014 at 3:07 pm
    How can we ensure a consistency in our children's exposure to sustainability? In other words, how can we intergrade green teaching not only into the school system, but also to millions of new York homes. The last thing children need is contradictions between what they are taught in schools and what they witness on the train ride home or what goes on at home. *I suppose tackling policy making would be the other top priority, education(to both the young and old) can prove to be futile if sustainability cannot get a strong political standing..
  26. pandozas April 3, 2014 at 2:57 pm
    More needs to be done about the cleaning products used in schools- most are Quaternary Ammonium based compounds that are severe asthma triggers.
  27. EcoArts Quad Cities April 3, 2014 at 2:55 pm
    This will be a relevant and valuable event! The Eco Arts Council support Edible Schoolyards and GREENing School programs! We also hope to assist in advocating for a community food forest in the Midwest Mississippi River Region on the Quad Cities. What is the most cohesive connectivity networking entity or list that provides for Environmental organizations looking to collaborate with other entities with similar missions across the United States?
  28. Jason Stevens April 3, 2014 at 2:53 pm
    Adaptive reuse of existing NYC buildings into a new school immediately creates a greener building footprint saving materials, space and money for taxpayers.
  29. Ongie Jimenez April 3, 2014 at 1:15 pm
    Introduction of roof gardens to further insulate the structure and students. It can also serve as activity area for landscaping and vegetable garden or crop growing. Adding bioswales to naturally filter the water and reuse it.
  30. marolo222 April 3, 2014 at 12:43 pm
    NYC! Great way to welcome Spring .... Go Green !
  31. Elizabeth Brown April 3, 2014 at 10:59 am
    How can we start greening more neighborhoods with urban pots and plots to create farm to table for each householder or apartment dweller- so all the kids at school can help teach and lead their families at home to be more green?
  32. alyssaalimurung April 3, 2014 at 9:31 am
    What are some ways to start a farm-to-table program at a school?