The newly constructed wing of BVSD’s Education Center was recognized recently for its energy-efficient design. It is one of 14 buildings nationwide to be awarded a Novel 40 award--at least a 40% improvement over the building code minimum requirements!
BVSD is celebrating 10 years of focused work on sustainability!
BVSD has been working hard deepening sustainability practices in the District for the past 10 years!! Last spring, we released a report highlighting some of these accomplishments.
- In the original SMS, we established the stretch goal to reduce GHG emissions by 80 percent and become climate neutral by 2050. In the last 5 years, the District substantially reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 13% from the baseline year primarily through reductions in electricity, natural gas, and transportation.
- BVSD was named the first REAL Certified school district in the country. This award is presented to restaurants and food service providers that are committed to promoting health and sustainability.
- Every school had an active green team within the past 5 years supporting activities like gardens, recycling programs, energy competitions and more.
- We continue to reduce energy in light of expanding buildings and air conditioning. Energy reductions are thanks in large part to the energy improvements we were able to make during the Bond and Construction program.
- The District hit an impressive target of 50% waste diversion, which means diverting half of our waste from the landfill through repurposing, recycling, and composting in our daily operations and through our Eco-Cycle programs, and our Bond and Construction program.
We are also thrilled to announce the release of our new greenBVSD Action Plan!
This plan sets the course for sustainability work in the District for the next 5 years. The plan was created in partnership with the Green Schools National Network (GSNN). This work has taken place over the past year and has included many staff interviews and a community forum in March, followed by several focus groups, review and feedback from an Ad Hoc Advisory Committee, several opportunities for community comment and final review over the summer by District leaders. The plan was presented to the Board Sept. 14, 2021.
This new plan looks different! The last plan was focused primarily in operations (waste, energy, materials, buildings and transportation and education). The new plan covers four strategic priority areas:
- curriculum and instruction- looking and experiences, knowledge and skills, and also values, behaviors and mindsets,
- climate and culture- including relationships, health and equity,
- leadership- including decision-making, structures, procurement, finance, HR and learning systems, and
Each of the strategic priority areas has an overarching goal and 3-5 supporting goals. Each area also includes indicators and measures staff will use to assess progress. Key staff in each of these areas have been involved in setting the new goals.
With this plan, we are excited to deepen our practice, gather more robust data, and understand more fully the impact on faculty, staff and students as the District continues the journey of transforming into a healthy, equitable, and sustainable school district where all faculty, staff, and students are engaged and prepared to lead us into a sustainable future.
In March, dozens of district partners and community sustainability stakeholders joined Boulder Valley School District staff to launch our community engagement work to update the district’s Sustainability Management System (SMS). This effort is the third update of the plan that was originally published in 2009 and updated in 2015.
On a recent Spring Saturday, students from Alicia Sanchez Elementary took turns packing dirt around newly installed wildlife displays in the open space just outside of their school, while across the way, Centaurus High School students were laboring to build new trails between the elementary school and the surrounding neighborhood.
Recently, BVSD welcomed an exciting new addition to our school bus fleet--an all-electric bus! The Blue Bird Vision model is a clean, efficient, and more environmentally sustainable version of a conventionally-fueled 71-passenger yellow bus.
We're so lucky in the Boulder Valley School District to have such beautiful outdoor spaces, even on our own properties. So when the pandemic hit, utilizing the outdoors has become not only a safe alternative to indoor classes, but a nice change of scenery for learning and engaging.
Custodial teams work hard to maintain safe and clean learning environments for students and school staff. They are vital to the success of the Green Star Schools Program which supports composting at our schools. Two BVSD custodians were featured in the latest issue of EcoCycle's Green Star News.
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