Coebourn Elementary School was recently recognized at the Pennsylvania State Capitol in Harrisburg for being a recipient of the 2017 U.S. Dept of Education Green Ribbon Schools Award. Coebourn is among 45 winning schools from across the nation and was the only school in Pennsylvania to receive the honor this year.
Nationally, 45 schools, nine districts, and nine post secondary institutions were named 2017 Green Ribbon Schools, including the School District of Philadelphia.
“Earning a National Green Ribbon Award from the Department of Education is a tremendous accomplishment for Coebourn and Penn-Delco,” said Superintendent Dr. George Steinhoff. “In the past few years, Coebourn has earned the state’s distinctive Blue Ribbon award, a National School of Character Award, and now the Green Ribbon as well. These are tangible recognitions of the wonderful things happening there in areas leading to a great school experience.”
The Green Ribbon award recognizes educational institutions for innovative efforts to reduce environmental impact and utility costs, improve health and wellness, and ensure effective sustainability education.
“Pennsylvania’s Green Ribbon Schools serve as a model for teaching the value of environmental stewardship through the infusion of real-world experiences into the classroom,” said state Secretary of Education Pedro A. Rivera. “I applaud the School District of Philadelphia and Coebourn Elementary School for their efforts to promote conservation and awareness, and thank them for their contributions to their communities.”
Coebourn’s Green Ribbon journey began in 2015 during the planning phase of construction of the new geothermal and energy efficient school facility. Composting, recycling, unplugging, no idle bus zones, a carton-to-garden project, Jump Rope for Heart, and monthly awareness activities are just a few initiatives taken to elevate environmental awareness via Coebourn’s Green Committee.
Staff and students implemented energy conservation practices and led recycling efforts throughout the school. They created a composting club and created a “Kinder-Garden” where “Green Goals,” such as turning out the lights and using the sunlight during the day, were implemented.
“This award is an acknowledgment of the tireless efforts that our students, staff and parents have put in to ensure Coebourn is a school that is making an impact on the future of our community,” said Principal Eric Kuminka. “I am elated and proud of our school community’s passion and commitment to ‘going green.’ It is essential to be respectful, responsible, and ready to conserve and protect our planet’s resources.”