U.S. Secretary of Education Names Henry County Public Schools a 2018 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School District Sustainability Awardee
HENRY COUNTY – The U.S. Department of Education announced today that Henry County Public Schools is among the 2018 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School District Sustainability Awardees.
Henry County Public Schools was nominated by Virginia Department of Education. Henry County Public Schools (HCPS) serves 7100 students in preschool through grade 12 in Henry County, Virginia. An economically disadvantaged locality of 384 square miles in southwestern Virginia, Henry County is a rural setting.
HCPS believes all students and staff must be good stewards of the environment and the school division’s financial resources. HCPS embraces energy conservation and recognizes that minimizing energy consumption and related costs will maximize funds available for use in the classroom.
Henry County Public Schools has a comprehensive approach and demonstrated progress towards each of the Green Ribbon School award program goals:
Goal I: An established energy conservation program with short- and long-range strategies to reduce energy consumption has been in place since 2009. Energy monitoring and reporting of consumption and cost to engage the community in supporting the energy conservation efforts of the division has resulted in each Henry County school receiving an Energy Star rating for its reduction in electric consumption, which has been earned annually by each of the division’s fourteen schools for the last nine years.
Goal II: In addition to facility improvements and ongoing efforts to enhance the comfort of each student’s learning environment through elimination of allergens, HCPS also recognizes healthy behaviors of students and staff as vital to the success of the school’s instructional program. HCPS has high standards for nutrition and fitness in order to improve student and staff health, attendance, and achievement and encourages staff participation in the division’s wellness program as a model for student participation in healthy extracurricular activities as well. Project-based learning at all levels has engaged the school community in partnership for healthy living initiatives to encourage the community as a whole to adjust to a healthier lifestyle through implementation of community-wide gardens and collaborative partnerships with local agencies that promote both physical and mental health.
Goal III: Environmental and sustainability education are an anchor in Henry County Public Schools’ curriculum. In addition to career and technical courses focused on green career pathways and STEM, all students participate in performance tasks embedded with environmental and sustainability standards. HCPS prepares students to be responsible stewards of their environment through its focus on environmental education, green career pathways, and STEM opportunities, as well as through collaborative community-centered initiatives that include habitat preservation, environmental awareness, and practical support for local outdoor attractions through cleanups and conservation campaigns.