From the Facilities Department: Much More than just Earth Day

Colleagues:

What did YOU do for Earth Day?

Last Friday schools across our district celebrated Earth Day with their own unique projects. Murray Middle School, for example, began preparation for a new Pollinator Garden in partnership with the U.S Green Building Council (USGBC) and the University of Minnesota’s Monarch Lab.

In this garden, along with gardens at six other schools, students will study the effects of climate change, understand the importance of native species, and explore the difference between rural and urban planting.

Murray is one of several SPPS sites developing amazing learning experiences centered on school gardens and other sustainability projects. More and more grants are available for such undertakings; watch The Bridge each week to learn of upcoming deadlines.

The Environmental Services Group (ESG), part of the SPPS Facilities Department, believes Earth Day can’t be a once-a-year effort. Projects such as Murray’s are essential for connecting youth to nature and highlighting the fragility and importance of our natural resources.

ESG is dedicated to health, safety, and environmental sustainability. We work hard to ensure a safe and healthy learning environment for the entire SPPS community. In addition to providing up-to-date, sustainable facilities, we work to promote environmental stewardship and sustainability across the District.

Among our recent projects are the Compost Pilot Program at Randolph Heights and Highland Park Elementary, Hydration Station Implementation and the Cafeteria Recycling Program. If your school is one of the increasing number of SPPS sites doing sustainability work, ESG wants to know about and promote it – for the benefit of our students and the entire Saint Paul community.

As Senegalese conservationist Baba Dioum said in a speech more than 40 years ago, “In the end we will conserve only what we love, we will love only what we understand, and we will understand only what we are taught.”

Sustainably yours,

Racquel Maronde
Environmental Service Group
SPPS Facilities