Supporting School Boards

 

We are committed to helping school boards ‘take the next step’ towards environmental sustainability with our Education Leaders for a Sustainable Future Initiative.  The graphic below illustrates two key interest areas of school boards: student learning and school infrastructure. We help school boards…

  • Learn from their colleagues about best practices in student learning and environmentally friendly school infrastructure
  • Explore synergies between these two areas
  • Consider how to take the next step towards environmental sustainability.

We’re pleased to do this work in support of the Alberta School Boards Association, and its recent resolution in support of sustainable development and environmental education.

This support comes in the form of the resources listed below, a Thought Leaders Forum and a series of workshops offered to board trustees and superintendents in their six Alberta zones, which began with a HIGHLY successful 19 January workshop for Zone 2/3 trustees from 29 Boards - click here to view the slide deck! Please contact ACEE executive director Gareth Thomson (Gareth at abcee.org) to request a workshop in your zone.

 

"I loved the hands-on approach you used in your presentation, and the chance to review policies

created by other boards.  Great stuff!"  (Cheryl Johner, Ward A Trustee, Edmonton Public School Board)

 

Resources

We know that every school board in Alberta and Canada supports environmental sustainability, and has already taken steps in this direction.  We respect the fact that different boards work in different contexts, with different resources, and are all at different stages in their journey towards environmental sustainability.

School board officials have told us of the strategic value in borrowing from cutting edge initiatives and policies from other jurisdictions, rather than reinventing the wheel. As a service to these officials, we offer the following resources.  Please take a look – then contact us if you would like to add your important resources!

 

‘Outward facing’ programs and initiatives from Alberta and Canada.  

The following websites reveal an impressive array of programs, initiatives, and classroom activities to advance environmental sustainability – prepare to be inspired!

 

Significant policies and policy framework documents
  • We’ve gathered several of these on our bookshelf – take a look!
  • We are indebted to the Sustainability and Education Policy Network, housed at the University of Saskatchewan, for their work to inventory and make available policies from over 300 Canadian school boards, including over 30 Alberta school boards! You can view and download these policies in column V in their excel-like online database.

 

Financial (and other!) support for student learning
  • We have gathered a list of grants, contests, and awards that enable student learning. Some of these support school infrastructure retrofits that link to student learning (e.g. BP’s A+ for Energy program provides up to $10,000). Click here to explore! 

 

Financial support for green infrastructure
  • Energy Efficiency Education Grant - NOTE that applications are DUE December 31, 2018.  Education institutions are eligible to apply. Projects or programs that will be considered include those that integrate learning while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and build capacity in your community. 
  • The Energy Efficiency Alberta Business Energy Savings Program offers rebates to encourage schools to choose high-efficiency products (up to $25,000 per individual facility)
  • Solar for Schools Program provides rebates to Alberta Public School Boards who install photovoltaic systems (PV) on their school. The Government of Alberta is investing $15 million into this program.  Read the news release here
  • Energy Performance Contracts are made possible through Alberta's Capital Borrowing Regulation under the school act (considered a 'best practice' nationally).  They transfer the risk of borrowing for major energy efficiency retrofits from the school board to the contractor.  Click here for more information by the Energy Services Association of Canada.

 

Sourcing green infrastructure
  • The Alberta Energy Efficiency Alliance offers a variety of relevant services, including a list of organizations who can provide energy audits for school boards

We have only just begun to compile this list, so this section is just a placeholder for now– please send us your suggestions!

 

Other resources:
  • Green Energy Futures highlights a variety of green energy innovations relevant to classrooms, schools, and school districts.
  • In 2016 we worked with over 3000 Alberta students, who made some powerful recommendations on how Alberta schools could take the next step towards environmental sustainability through infrastructure improvements, teacher professional learning, and student learning, seen through the lens of climate leadership.
  • Check out our resource hub for more!