Changemaker: Rachel Gutter: Greening Schools

Grist writer, David Roberts, recently posted an interesting interview with Rachel Gutter, the Director of the Center for Green Schools. Part of the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED program, Rachel finds creative ways to connect with schools and legislators to help them save money while greening schools. Here are a couple excerpts from the interview:
The real conversation to be had around green schools, the reason there has been such significant uptake in all 50 states, is about stewardship of taxpayer dollars. It's about finally starting to think about things in terms of ROI [return on investment]. One of the biggest barriers we are trying to help schools overcome is the separation of capital budgets and operating budgets. Schools could save 25 percent off the bat with some basic efficiency measures, occupant education, and engagement programs. I've seen it happen.
The first thing is, we don't just show up there. We identify champions, we identify partners, and whenever possible we aim for peer-to-peer conversation. The first thing is, we don't just show up there. We identify champions, we identify partners, and whenever possible we aim for peer-to-peer conversation. Sometimes that's through our chapter networks -- we've got chapters in all 50 states. Collectively there are more than 1,200 volunteers spread out throughout green schools committees. We've encouraged them to reach out beyond the architects, engineers, and facilities managers and bring in teachers, school board members, and administrators. Ultimately this stuff is common sense, but if you don't engage people in a partnership early on, you're not going to be successful.

Rachel and David also talk about the increasing importance of food in the "green school equation" and of helping students become leaders and changemakers in the whole process.


Read the complete interview.

~ Marsha

Image courtesy of Center for Green Schools.

Like our blog? Please share it with others, comment, and/or subscribe to our RSS feed.
You have read this article changemakers / environmental protection / green schools / interviews / LEED certification / systemic change with the title Changemaker: Rachel Gutter: Greening Schools. You can bookmark this page URL http://actuosa-participatio.blogspot.com/2011/04/changemaker-rachel-gutter-greening.html. Thanks!

No comment for "Changemaker: Rachel Gutter: Greening Schools"

Post a Comment