Resource Recovery: Green Schools

The Michigan Green Schools Program

was originally started by students and teachers in the Hartland Consolidated School District in the fall of 2005. The idea was to help encourage schools to set environmental goals by setting up a program with attainable points to become Green School certified. They developed their idea and presented it to Representative Joe Hune who took it to the House. After passing the House, the Public Act of 2006 passed into the hands of Senator Valde Garcia who took it to the State Senate floor. The Act was passed almost unanimously and was signed into law by Jennifor Granholm on May 21, 2006.

The Ionia County Board of Commissioners signed a Resolution to Support the Michigan Green Schools Program on June 9, 2009. the goal of Ionia County’s green School Program is to provide as many resources to the schools as possible; therefore, instead of designating one department or agency to oversee  the program, it is instead cooperative effort between the Intermediate School District and the County of Ionia via the Resource Recovery, Emergency Management, and Health Departments.It is our hope that with so many agencies available, we can help the schools meet their needs to become Green School Certified in the best way possible.


Left to right: Mark Howe, Elizabeth Robins, Joanne Harrell, Jenna Lalick Christina Dombrowski, Bill Helmer, and Lynn Mason.

Congratulations to Ionia County’s FIRST
State-certified Green Schools!!

Belding Alternative School of Education, Belding

Ellis Elementary, Belding

Woodview Elementary, Belding

Click here for the letter to the schools

Click here for the 2009-2010 application (.pdf)

Click here for the 2009-2010 application (.doc)

If you are unable to download the application form, please contact us, as it can be faxed, mailed or emailed to you.

CLICK HERE FOR NEWS!!!

How it Works:

The way schools achieve their Green School Certification is by completing at least 10 of 20 items listed in the Act.

20 Points of Energy and Environmental Savings Activities

  1. The school recycles paper.

  • The school reuses its magazines and newspapers for other projects.

  • The school has adopted an endangered species animal from one of several organizations and posted a picture of the animal in a main traffic area.

    World Wildlife Federation

    Defenders of Wildlife

    Smithsonian National Zoological Park

    Trumpeter Swan Society

    Learn more about the endangered species in our own backyard, here in Michigan, from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) by clicking here.

  • The school media center updates its print and nonprint ecological materials regularly.

    Great Lakes in My World – curriculum, able to reproduce for educational purposes – available for check out at the Ionia County Resource Recovery Office, contact us for more information.

    Waste Wise Information Series For Education – curriculum, able to reproduce for educational purposes – available for check out at the Ionia County Resource Recovery Office, contact us for more information. 

    Project Wet – curriculum, able to reproduce for educational purposes – training available for teachers, click here for more information.

    Bottlecap Little BottlecapBottlecap Little Bottlecap – “four art projects for children, families, schools and non-profits utilizing recycled plastic bottlecaps” – available for check out at the Ionia County Resource Recovery Office, click here for more information.

    Animal Invaders: Asian Carp – Elementary school level reading book – available for check out at the Ionia County Resource Recovery Office, contact us for more information.

    Bluebird Rescue – Elementary school level reading book – 6 copies available for check out at the Ionia County Resource Recovery Office, contact us for more information.

    Road to Recovery: Karner Blue Butterfly – Elementary school level reading book – available for check out at the Ionia County Resource Recovery Office, contact us for more information.

    One Child, One Planet – Elementary school level story book – 4 copies available for check out at the Ionia County Resource Recovery Office, contact us for more information.

     The Last Polar Bear – Elementary school level story book – 9 copies available for check out at the Ionia County Resource Recovery Office, contact us for more information.

    Nutik, the Wolf Pup – Elementary school level story book – available for check out at the Ionia County Resource Recovery Office, contact us for more information.

    Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Environment: Environmental Education Page – a great source of links, including approved environmental education curriculum.

  • An energy savings program has been instituted at the school.

    Alliance to Save Energy’s Green School Program: Empowering Schools through Energy Efficiency

    Great Lakes Energy Service, Inc.  What’s New at GLES: Great Lakes Energy Service Inc. has been awarded a $1 million grant to install renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies, and provide the associated learning tools for educational institutions throughout the state beginning in fall 2009 and running until June 2011. From this grant, we have developed a program for Michigan public and private K-14 schools which will award packages in the amount of $1,000 to $30,000 for the following:

    – Wind Turbine and Solar PV System
    – Solar PV System
    – Wind Turbine System
    – Lighting upgrades, Sensors, Timer and Thermostat packages
    – Mobile Renewable Energy Classroom Visit

    School Grant Application are being accepted now! “

  • Students at the school participate in a planned program of energy savings, including dusting coils on cafeteria refrigerators, placing film on windows, setting hot water heaters 1° (Fahrenheit) lower, seeing how plants and trees strategically placed can save energy for the school, and checking proper inflation in bus tires and other school vehicles once a month.

  • The school has hosted a visit by an ecological spokesperson, a representative of the Sierra Club, an endangered animals species show, or a similar presentation.

  • The school has a birdhouse habitat project.

  • The school has established a natural Michigan garden project with native plants.

    Classroom compost bucket – save some scraps from lunch and start a compost pile at your school, use the finished compost to fertilize your garden! – available for check out at the Ionia County Resource Recovery Office, contact us for more information. 

  • The school has solar power presentations or experiments, such as a solar cookout.

    Solar cooker – Two kits are available for check out at the Ionia County Resource Recovery Office, contact us for more information.
    *Koegel’s is a sponsor of the Michigan Green Schools Program, and as such, will provide hot dogs for your solar cookout.
     Koegel Meats, Inc.
    3400 W Bristol Road – Flint, MI 48507
    Phone 810 238-3685  – Fax 810 238-2467

  • Classes do energy audits of their classrooms and make improvements, such as placing film on windows, caulking windows, or using kits to make windows more energy-efficient.

  • The school has a printer cartridge recycling program through which the school earns money by selling the cartridges to one or more companies that buy cartridges from schools.

    Funding Factory

    Cartridges for Kids

  • The school recycles batteries and has designated a representative to return them to an appropriate recycling program.

    Contact Elizabeth Robins, Ionia County Resource Recovery Coordinator to discuss how your school can participate in the ongoing county-wide battery recycling program.

  • The school recycles cellular telephones and receives money for the telephones from recycling companies that work with schools.

    Funding Factory

    Cartridges for Kids

    Charitable Recycling

  • The school observes Earth Day in some way in April.

  • Art classes at the school have a poster contest to support ecology concerns and a school-wide display in conjunction with Earth Day activities.

  • The school has science class projects in which students do several home energy improvements, such as turn down hot water heaters, install home window insulation kits, clean coils on home refrigerators, and install draft guards for doors.

  • The school has an ecology club, whose activities include such activities as helping senior citizens make their homes more energy-efficient, putting in new furnace filters, caulking windows, cleaning refrigerator coils in homes, and setting water heaters 1° (Fahrenheit) lower.

    Starting or Revitalizing a School Environmental Club

    How to Start an Environmental Club

    How to Start a Club

    Setting Up a K-12 Environmental Club that Pulls in Students

  • The school’s classes visit internet sites where clicking saves rainforest habitat and teachers document the students’ efforts

    The Rainforest Site

    The Nature Conservancy

    The Ecology Fund

  • The school sets a goal of 5% less energy usage in the school and works with local power utilities to see progress toward the goal.

News you can use

  • coming soon…

For more more Information…

Michigan Green Schools Official Website

Sustainability Education Handbook: A Resource Guide for K-12 Teachers Incorporating the Michigan State Framework Standards

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