Task Forces

Sustainable Jersey for Schools is supported by 12 issue-based task forces that help maintain the integrity and substance of the certification program.

New Jersey leaders volunteer to serve on the Sustainable Jersey for Schools Task Forces from school districts, state agencies, academia, government, the non-profit sector and the business community. The task forces research and disseminate best practices, translate global and state imperatives into local actions, test sustainability planning models and develop community resources for the program.

In general, task force members are asked to attend and participate in 4-8 meetings a year (not all are in-person meetings). At these meetings, task force members bring forward innovative ideas, problematic situations and general assessments of what the schools need to advance sustainability actions in order to update the Sustainable Jersey for Schools program actions annually. Participants take feedback from schools on proposed actions and then revise the actions accordingly on an annual cycle.

To join a task force, fill out an application and email it to schools@sustainablejersey.com

Animals in the Community*

The work of this task force addresses education about animals in the school community and planning of on-site wildlife management.

Arts/Culture

This task force works on actions that encourage schools to offer all arts disciplines and to initiate and support creativity in the school community.

Community Partnership and Outreach

This task force focuses on linking schools and their communities to broaden the scope of sustainability education.  Schools are encouraged to tap into community resources to enrich what they can offer students, as well as to reach out to the greater school community (i.e. parents, public) on sustainability issues and what they can do to help address the issues.

Student Learning

This task force develops actions that promote the integration of sustainability concepts into classroom based lessons across all disciplines.

Energy and Greenhouse Gas*

This task force develops actions that promote energy efficiency, renewable energy alternatives, and reducing greenhouse gases.

Health and Wellness

This task force addresses actions related to healthy indoor and outdoor school environments, nutritious and local foods, student and staff wellness, and active and safe transportation.

Green Design

This task force addresses actions related to healthy indoor and outdoor school environments, nutritious and local foods, student and staff wellness, and active and safe transportation.

Land Use and Transportation*

This task force focuses on the coordination of land use and transportation planning and development to preserve and enhance resources and facilitate healthier and more livable communities.

Leadership and Capacity Building

This task force works on actions that help schools create goals for a more sustainable future, use indicators to track progress towards these goals, and develop action plans that have roles for schools, government, citizens, businesses and civic organizations. 

Operations and Maintenance

This task force focuses on the implementation of sustainable policies, procedures, and practices within schools that will help lead to cost savings, healthier and more efficient buildings and grounds. 

Waste Management*

This task force focuses on waste reduction and recycling actions for schools.  It works in collaboration with the Operations and Maintenance task force.