Giving Compass' Take:

• Lauren Barack shares how schools are engaging students in green activities like composting and ecology lessons to make their schools and communities more environmentally friendly. 

• How can school projects make an impact outside of the classroom? 

• Find out how Puerto Rico schools are going green to improve climate resilience

Schools looking to stitch ecology, recycling, and even composting into the curriculum are finding a lot of support these days. Most are taking a broader step then the supermarkets' and city governments' moves to banish plastic bags, and are looking for inspiration online and from programs specifically designed for schools.

Lanier Middle School, in Fairfax County, Virginia, was named a Green Ribbon School for its ecology journey that started in 2009. That’s the year the school registered with NWF’s Eco-Schools program, Faiza Alam, the school’s special education science teacher, who runs the initiative, said in an email.

Lanier started with teams of parents, staff members, and students, and the project, which started in classrooms, eventually made its way in to the cafeteria. Today, the student-involved Eco-club, as its known, meets twice a week after school for two hours and during study hall, and has a recycling and "upcycling" component, where items that once may have gone into the trash bin are reused.

“All 7th graders are required to engage in a quarterly environmental stewardship project to help reduce negative human impact on our watershed,” said Alam. “Recycling is a big part of this requirement, where students not only recycle waste, but make craft from it through their art and science class projects.”

Read the full article about schools going green by Lauren Barack at Education Dive.