Last Monday, the US Department of Education announced that 33 states and the District of Columbia have submitted intents to nominate schools for the new Green Ribbon Schools awards program launched this past September. Congratulations should go out to all of the state departments of education in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed (Delaware, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, DC): All of them have declared their intent to nominate schools in their jurisdictions for the Green Ribbon Schools program!
Maryland Interim State Superintendent Bernard Sadusky said he expects a great deal of interest in the new Green Ribbon program. ”Our schools have long felt a connection to the world around them,” Dr. Sadusky said in a press release last Monday. “The outdoors is a natural extension of the classroom for many of our students. We look forward to participating in this valuable program.”
U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan is also voiced his support for the program via press release last Monday, saying “We are excited about the potential impact the Green Ribbon Schools awards program can have in encouraging schools to improve their energy efficiency, create healthy environments for students and staff, and enhance their work to effectively prepare graduates for 21st century careers.”
Participating states are currently in the process of posting applications for schools in their districts, so keep your eyes on the State Department of Education websites! Below, you can check out the contact information (provided by US ED) for each Watershed state’s department of education representative for the Green Ribbon Schools program. Brief updates on the status of the Green Ribbon Schools application process are also included where available:
- DC Public Schools – Additional details are currently unavailable. Be sure to check the DC Public Schools website for updates.
- State Contact: Sam Ullery, School Garden Specialist, Department of Wellness and Nutrition, (202)741-6485, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Delaware Department of Education – Additional details are currently unavailable. Be sure to check the Delaware Department of Education website for updates. Updates may also be posted to their Facebook page.
- State Contact: Lisa Bishop, Special Assistant to the Secretary, lbishop@DOE.K12.DE.US
- Maryland State Department of Education – Applications will be released in mid-December. Interested schools will complete the applications and submit them to MSDE for review by February 27, 2012.
- State Contact: Gary Hedges, Science Specialist (410)767-0323, email@example.com
- New York State Department of Education – New York State hopes to release their applications for the Green Ribbon Schools program in mid-January. Visit the New York State Department of Education’s Facilities Planning website for additional information.
- Pennsylvania Department of Education – Additional details, including the application for schools to submit for consideration and the program timeline, will be released in the near future. Refer to Pennsylvania’s Pathways to Green Schools website for additional details.
- State Contact: Patricia L. Vathis, Environment and Ecology Curriculum Advisor, (717)783-6994, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Virginia Department of Education – Virginia DOE anticipates releasing its state application and additional information on the application process by mid to late December via a superintendent’s memorandum posted on the Virginia DOE homepage. Until then, take a look at the Virginia Green Ribbon Schools announcement webpage.
- State Contact: Eric M. Rhoades, Science Coordinator, (804)786-2481, Eric.Rhoades@doe.virginia.gov
- West Virginia Department of Education – Additional details are currently unavailable. Be sure to check the West Virginia Department of Education website for updates.
- State Contact: Vicki Fenwick-Judy, Education Coordinator, (304)558-2699, email@example.com,