All seven schools in the Lawrence Township public school district have been awarded bronze certification by Sustainable Jersey for Schools in the latest round of certifications, school district officials announced.
A school must earn at least 150 points to qualify for bronze certification and 350 points to receive silver certification, according to Sustainable Jersey for Schools’ website at www.sustainablejerseyschools.com. Certification is valid for three years.
Bronze certification means a school has made a commitment to sustainability and has succeeded in implementing significant first steps, according to Sustainable Jersey for School. It requires establishing a “green team,” implementing two of 14 priority actions and completing actions in six of 22 categories.
“I am incredibly proud of our educators and students for obtaining this important certification,” Superintendent of Schools Robyn Klim said, adding she is “proud of our district’s overall commitment to climate change education.”
Cari Gallagher, the school district’s sustainable leader, said she was proud that the schools achieved bronze certification again. This is the third time that they have been awarded bronze certification.
The school district’s administration, faculty, community liaisons, staff and students all had an integral role in the process of obtaining bronze certification, officials said.
At the Slackwood Elementary School, its school garden earned points toward a cumulative tally of 215 points. The outdoor garden consists of four raised beds, a butterfly garden, an herb garden and an indoor hydroponic garden.
The Lawrenceville Elementary School earned points toward its 175-point total for its Education for Sustainability program. First-graders learned about animal adaptation – why animals camouflage themselves to blend in with their habitats.
At the Benjamin Franklin Elementary School, points were earned for engaging in a two-week unit on hatching chicks that was tied into the broader life cycles unit. The school earned a cumulative 175 points.
The Eldridge Park School earned 155 points overall, including points for hosting a Green Fair. The fair featured hands-on experiences, from recycling sorting to a live worm compost demonstration.
The Lawrence Intermediate School received points toward its cumulative total of 155 points for an innovative project that brought plants and flowers into the classroom to be used as a springboard for climate change education.
At the Lawrence Middle School, points were earned toward its total of 175 points for the school’s outdoor classroom. The school received a grant in 2021 to buy tables and a wagon to bring supplies to the outdoor classroom area.
Lawrence High School received a total of 170 points. It earned points for its Education for Sustainability program. Students in the environmental education classes engaged in a unit about renewable and non-renewable energy sources.