Our Three Sustainable Goals
- Goal 1: Develop a sustainable building infrastructure.
Any new or renovated building will be designed to achieve a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) silver rating at a minimum.
To date, buildings that have earned or are projected to earn a LEED rating include:
Hermitage Elementary CERTIFIED
Windsor Oaks Elementary SILVER
Renaissance Academy GOLD
Virginia Beach Middle SILVER
Great Neck Middle GOLD PROJECTED
Pupil Transportation Services Maintenance Facility PLATINUM PROJECTED
College Park Elementary PLATINUM PROJECTED
Kellam High GOLD PROJECTED
The Renaissance Academy, completed in January 2010, is an example of an environmentally sustainable school. Typical sustainable features found in this 289,000 sq. ft. facility include: a rainwater harvesting system that uses stored rainwater to flush the toilets (estimated to save one million gallons of water per year); solar heated hot water used in the cafeteria; lighting sensors to supplement natural lighting; artificial light in all of the classrooms; and an interactive kiosk allows visitors to access data on all of these systems, including the geothermal and photovoltaic panels.
- Goal 2: Integrate sustainable practices throughout the school division.
In 2006, a Sustainable School Committee (SSC) was formed to meet on a regular basis for the purpose of monitoring and making recommendations regarding sustainability within the school division. Members serving on this committee are from various departments throughout the division and are committed to fostering the principles of environmental, economic and social stewardship throught the incorporation of sustainable practices throught the school division.
Read more about our Environmentally Sustainable Practices policy.
- Goal 3: Educate the public about the importance of sustainability.
With 85 schools, approximately 15,000 employees, and nearly 70,000 students, the school division has a great platform for directing change locally and on a larger scale.
Each school has a Sustainable School Liaison (SSL) tasked with increasing sustainability awareness throughout the school division. Through their leadership, many of our elementary, middle, and high schools have developed programs or clubs addressing the issue of sustainability. A listing of environmental programs taking place at each school is available for review.
On a quarterly basis, the school division publishes a newsletter – Green News – highlighting initiatives and programs targeted on conserving resources. The most current issue of Green News and archives are available on this site.
Since September 2008, the school division has diverted 4,531 tons from the waste stream. This is equivalent to saving:
- 4,869 tons diverted from the waste stream.
- 82,771 trees
- 1.8 million gallons of oil
- 14,607 cubic yards of landfill space
- 19.5 million kilowatts of energy (enough to power 2,435 homes for one year)
- 34 million gallons of water
- Information as of: June 2012