Sustainable Jersey for Schools Community Certification Report

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This is the Sustainable Jersey for Schools Certification Report of Three Bridges Elementary School (Hunterdon), a Sustainable Jersey for Schools silver certified applicant.

Three Bridges Elementary School (Hunterdon) was certified on September 23, 2015 with 390 points. Listed below is information regarding Three Bridges Elementary School (Hunterdon)’s Sustainable Jersey for Schools efforts and materials associated with the applicant’s certified actions.

Contact Information

The designated Sustainable Jersey for Schools contact for Three Bridges Elementary School (Hunterdon) is:

Name:Kristen Higgins
Title/Position:Principal / elementary school
Address:480 Main St P.O. Box 443
Three Bridges, NJ 08887
Phone:908-534-5710

Sustainability Actions Implemented

Each approved action and supporting documentation for which Three Bridges Elementary School (Hunterdon) was approved for in 2015 appears below. Note: Standards for the actions below may have changed and the documentation listed may no longer satisfy requirements for that action. Additionally, points associated with actions prior to 2013 certifications may not be accurate.

  • Board Leadership & Planning

    Green Enhancement of District Strategic Plans

    10 Points District

    Program Summary:

    In the spring of 2012, Readington Township Public Schools began the process of creating a strategic plan for the district. PLC Associates, Inc., was brought on board to assist with information gathering in the form of online surveys which were distributed not only to the school staff, students, and parents, but also to the township’s leaders and community members. A Core Team was convened including members from the staff, students, board of education, administration, and community. Facilitated by PLC Associates, that team gathered for a three day retreat in May 2012 where the data gathered was analyzed and subsequently developed into five strategic goals, each with specific objectives and a proposed timeline. Once the Core Team reviewed and agreed upon the goals and objectives, the strategic plan was presented to the Readington Board of Education at their August 2012 meeting and was unanimously voted to be adopted. One of the five goals deals specifically with sustainability and reads “Ensure institutional and financial sustainability in the face of economic and demographic challenges.” It includes an objective to “continue the district’s commitment to environmental sustainability.” This has driven the re-invigoration of the district’s Green Committee which has steered the efforts in each of the district schools as well as the district’s partnership with Class 5’s Schools for Energy Efficiency (SEE) program. The strategic plan was communicated to staff and parents through faculty meetings, Home School Association meetings , and Superintendent Chats which are quarterly informational meetings held with parents. A column dedicated to the strategic plan was included in the monthly district parent newsletter discussing each goal and reviewing progress. In addition, several articles have been published in the local newspaper introducing and communicating progress on the district’s strategic plan. Information on the strategic plan is also easily accessed on the school district’s website homepage. A review of strategic plan goals and progress was presented to stakeholders at a meeting held in June 2015 with a look forward to enhancements that might be needed in the next five year plan.

    Professional Development for Sustainability

    15 Points Bronze Priority Silver Priority School District

    Program Summary:

    As part of ongoing Teacher Academy professional in-service series, the Readington Township School District offered “Best Practices in Sustainability” on Wednesday, July 22, 2015. The workshop, which was open to district faculty and community members, focused on sustainability, indoor air quality, the district’s achievements in energy reduction, student involvement in environmental projects, and native landscaping. Energy Coordinator Jodi Bettermann presented energy savings achieved by the district to date and strategies that can be used at home and in the classroom to create a more sustainable existence. Facilities Manager Donald Race presented on the concept and history of sustainability, and indoor air quality. Facilitator and Superintendent Barbara Sargent presented the districts achievements in program involvement. Master Gardener John DeMarrais and George Crofts from the Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Hunterdon County presented a program on native and invasive plants and their impact on the environment. The workshop closed with an open discussion on sustainability issues related to the district and community. 16 people attended the workshop including board members, administration and teachers from the district. The audience found the session very engaging, informative and entertaining.

  • Climate Mitigation & Renewable Energy

    School Carbon Footprint

    10 Points Bronze Priority School District

    Program Summary:

    The school carbon footprint was calculated using January to December 2014 as the baseline year. The Sustainable Jersey Carbon Footprint spreadsheet was used to do the calculations and is attached. Because the school district has an Energy Tracking and Management program in place that regularly collects data on facility electricity and natural gas usage, this information was readily available to enter into the spreadsheet. The facility uses natural gas and electricity as its utilities. None of the electricity purchased is from renewable sources for the baseline year. The school is used throughout the year not only by the school district but also by community groups. In addition several night and weekend events take place sponsored by the Readington Township Recreation Department. Transportation for students includes mainly large buses fueled with diesel, but smaller gas fueled buses are also used. In addition, the facilities department uses trucks and some heavy equipment, which are included in the calculations for the fleet. Mileage and fuel numbers were provided by the district’s transportation department.

  • Energy Efficiency

    Energy Audit

    20 Points Bronze Priority Silver Priority School

    Program Summary:

    In March 2011, The District participated in a LGEA covering all four of our schools: Holland Brook, Readington Middle, Three Bridges, and Whitehouse Schools. Historic energy use was bench-marked utilizing the EPA's Energy Star Portfolio Manager. The audit looked at building occupancy, size, and construction, equipment in its review of the districts buildings. The audit also evaluated the use of renewable energy as a viable option for the district. The audit developed energy conservation measures that had the potential to reduce the districts energy use by 15%, and natural gas use by 20%. This could result in an annual energy savings of $145,000.00. The cost to implement all ECM's would be $2,656,565, and payback of 18.4 years based on energy savings. As a result of implementing many of the recommended ECMs, the district continues to see energy and cost savings. *We are requesting 10 points for the LGEA, and the additional 10 points for a district summary.

    Energy Tracking & Management

    20 Points School

    Program Summary:

    The Readington School District’s energy conservation program began in 2011-12 with the establishment of baseline energy usage at each of the district’s schools. The program became formalized with a partnership with Schools for Energy Efficiency (SEE) and the employment of an Energy Efficiency Coordinator who regularly monitors and reports energy usage data to the school community. The school is applying for 20 points for this action for benchmarking and ongoing tracking. After joining the SEE program, building interview forms were completed giving an inventory of each facility. Baseline electricity and natural gas usage data were entered into the SEE program’s energy tracking software and also into Energy Star’s Portfolio Manager. Each month the Energy Efficiency Coordinator enters energy cost and usage data into the software program and Portfolio Manager. Each quarter results are shared with the school community in an e-mail results report. The results are also reviewed with the district’s Green Team at their meetings. The district currently is in Year 3 of its energy conservation program. In the first two years, the district as a whole has reduced its electricity usage by 13%, electricity demand by 6%, and natural gas usage by 2% compared to the baseline year. This has resulted in a cost avoidance of over $125,500 in that time period.

  • Food & Nutrition

    Healthy Food Choices Beyond the Cafeteria

    10 Points School District

    Program Summary:

    First grade spends the most time in our school vegetable garden. With the help of the third graders, first graders plant, weed, water and take general care of the school garden. We also have scouts assist and several parents. TBS students learn about community gardening. they also learn through tasting their own grown food how very delicious fresh produce is. To assist is helping the students find ways to obtain fresh grown food and participate in its production, the first grade students went to the organic Readington Twp. Community Garden. A middle school science teacher, Chip Shepard, is very involved in the garden and led the students through the norms of the garden and all the produce available. The students were able to taste and learn the motto "Share the work; share the harvest." see video - https://vimeo.com/98549456 A bulletin is prominently displayed at the front of the school with pictures of our students enjoying healthy food choices. (see attachment) We also provide recipes for cooking with local produce in the pocket of the board. Students also had a chance to come in and taste test Maschio's food. Students were encourage to be honest and share their thoughts on the food. The building principal called parents for permission for their child to participate and to extend the invitation to the parent so family ideas were shared out. healthy food choices were presented. Attached to this document, you will find our district wellness policy, our parent handbook which outlines on page 10 snacks at school, and minutes from a community/principal meeting with our food services to discuss choices offered and what other healthy items we would like to have served.

    Promote Locally Grown Foods

    10 Points School District

    Program Summary:

    Readington Township Public Schools outsources it lunch program to Maschio's Food Services. Maschio's provides hot and cold lunches to students at Three Bridges School for the full day pre-school through third grade. Maschio's provides locally grown produce through its Farm to School Program. The attached menus show Farm to School items. Attached you will find a lunch menu highlighting our Farm Fresh Meals along with some information from our food distributor regarding locally grown foods. Attached to this document, you will find several menus, flyers, purchase orders and newsletters detailing our locally grown foods program. Our school also planted their own vegetable garden. Our garden is used by all grade levels. On June 10th, we harvested our garden as a school and served our school grown salad on Field Day (June 11, 2015) - see attached photos. We promoted physical fitness with healthy local eating.

    School Gardens

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    Students participate in the seed to plant process throughout their entire four years at Three Bridges School. First Grade students plant in March and observe plant growth which incorporates math lessons and graphing as well as their original science lesson on the structure of a plant and plant life. They also learn life lesson skills through maintaining the beds including patience, care and responsibility to the community. Second Grade students harvest the food at the end of the year and third grade students prepare the beds and plant pumpkins for the summer. Pre-K and Kindergarten students plant marigolds and Nasturtiums and are taught about using companion plants instead of pesticides which can be harmful to our community. We have fed the whole school salad at lunch from our school garden. Third grade students water and weed with the assistance of their first grade buddies. Three Bridges School has truly created a community garden. At the end of each school year, pumpkins are planted so they can be harvested by the kindergarten and first graders in the fall. The students have a class pumpkin and later enjoy eating the seeds and pumpkin pie. The garden is located outside the pre-school/first grade wing, just steps from the classrooms. Please find attached pictures of the harvests and planting guidelines for the teachers - focus of these documents is first grade.

  • Green Cleaning

    Green Cleaning Equipment

    10 Points School District

    Program Summary:

    Green cleaning equipment is just part of the district overall plan of a low environmentally cleaning program that incorporates prevention, product selection, equipment efficiency, and effective procedures.Through the purchase and use of green motorized cleaning equipment, our custodians are able to clean more efficiently and ensure allergy- and asthma-friendly environments by improving indoor air quality and eliminating harmful cleaning products. By utilizing a local purchasing coop, we have been able to replace older less efficient equipment while also controlling costs.The newer equipment is quieter, ergonomically designed, uses HEPA filtration, and optimizes chemical use.

    Green Cleaning Policy & Plan

    10 Points School District

    Program Summary:

    A proactive plan started by the district's green committee (now the District Green Team) several years ago, replaced several harmful cleaning chemicals being used to clean the buildings. Now an all-purpose peroxide based cleaner that provides for a safer and more effective alternative to previous products used. Several other procedures were changed that increased the cleanliness of the buildings and reduced costs such as microfiber cloths for dusting and floor care. This year for the Sustainable Schools Program, the District Green Committee has been revived as the Green Team. As a refocused team, we started reevaluating our cleaning plan, and to create a policy to assist us in becoming "Greener" in our sustainability efforts. The team worked with our district custodians and our contracted cleaning services to create a written cleaning plan, and with the help of the district policy committee added key points to what would become the green cleaning policy. The policy has been adopted by the board of education, and as a living document, along with the cleaning plan will be updated as technologies become available. The policy has been distributed to staff through an email, and will be presented as part of a green cleaning awareness program for staff, parents, and the community. The info will also be available on the schools' website. The district had a solid and effective cleaning plan in place, but it has been refined, and by continually improving cleanliness, health of occupants, and further lowering costs will continue to have a positive impact for students, staff, and the community who use our buildings.

  • Healthy School Environments

    Access to Healthy Water in Schools

    20 Points School

    Program Summary:

    The goal of the Three Bridges School is to ensure that clean and healthy drinking water is available to all students during the school day and to promote water as the primary hydration option. This school is connected to a private well on the property and is regulated under the Safe Drinking Water Act and required to complete regular water testing for all regulated contaminants, including lead and copper. Regular testing has ensured that our water supply is not contaminated and safe for our staff, students and the community. The Green Team evaluated and completed the drinking water needs assessment to determine the schools strengths and discover areas of improvement. A plan has been developed to address some needs and how to further promote the healthy benefits of water following the CDC's program Increasing Access to Drinking Water in Schools.

    Asthma Friendly School

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    The Asthma Friendly School Award ensures that schools are in compliance with NJ laws regarding asthma management and good indoor air quality. Three Bridges School completed all necessary components. All staff have been provided with training regarding the treatment of Asthma and important environmental factors to reduce the exacerbation of Asthma symptoms in the school environment. The school environment is Asthma Friendly and our indoor air quality excellent. The attached award documents our designation and is valid for three years.

    Indoor Air Quality Review

    15 Points Bronze Priority Silver Priority School

    Program Summary:

    The Three Bridges School IAQ team used the Tool for Schools Checklists and procedures to inspect the building to get an overall perspective on conditions related to IAQ. The team took the findings along with having staff fill out the classroom checklist and developed a plan to address issues and educate parents and the community. The district IAQ designated person related these findings along with presenting an IAQ awareness training session. Along with a reporting process for concerns and annual awareness training, the staff feel they will be a part of the process of creating a healthy environment for our students and staff.

    Outdoor Air Quality Awareness Program

    10 Points School District

    Program Summary:

    Outdoor Air Quality Awareness Program Asthma awareness and breathing issues are a major concern and focus at Three Bridges School. We have always been very concerned with the air quality within the building, This year, we started to educate the students, families and staff about how outdoor air quality effects the ease of breathing for all people. All parents were notified of the program launch. The school community can find the local outdoor air quality posted on the main page of our school’s website through a free AirNow widget. Flags fly under the national flag on our school flag staff. The custodian raises the air quality flag and the students report on the the color for the day and read what we should do if it is an alert color. The students share the air quality report on the school announcements. The protocol in place for our school was discussed at a faculty meeting and the teachers know to check the home page of the TBS website each day. Attached to this document, you will find a copy of the school's website which has the daily posting, a picture of the air quality flag on our flag pole in front of our school. We also were planning to include an audio of our morning announcements and a description of the air quality patterns, but unfortunately the file will not upload. Attached is a flyer we sent home explaining the addition of the air quality flags flying outside the school.

    Reporting Process for Indoor Air Quality Concerns

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    The process for reporting IAQ concerns was presented at a staff faculty meeting as part of a IAQ awareness training session. The "designated person" for the district presented a power-point with basic info on the importance of IAQ, sources of contaminants, basic control strategies, and how to report concerns and the steps taken to resolve issues. Forms were developed for concerns, and follow up. All concerns and outcomes will be logged and filed as an ongoing IAQ record of the school building and compliance with PEOSH standards. Information and the reporting process will be made available in the facilities section of the school website for staff and the community to view and report issues. Community training sessions are planned for the new school year. As a result of the awareness training and the facilities department proactive approach to building maintenance, there have been minimal reports of IAQ issues for this building to date.

  • Innovation Projects

    Innovative Project #1

    10 Points School District

    Program Summary:

    The Readington Public School District employs an innovative approach to resource conservation with its Energy Efficiency Program. Since 2012, the district has partnered with Class 5 Energy’s Schools for Energy Efficiency (SEE) program to improve facility operations and modify behavior of staff and students resulting in reduced energy usage. An Energy Efficiency Coordinator (EEC) is employed to implement the strategies of the SEE program in the schools. Ongoing communication about program goals, activities, energy results, and energy saving tips is provided using an Energy Efficiency section of the district’s website. With guidance from the SEE program, the district’s Green Committee crafted a comprehensive Energy Conservation Policy adopted in 2013 to outline expectations for use of lighting, heating, and cooling as well as shut down requirements for electronic devices. The goals of the Energy Efficiency Program include reduction in energy use, recognition of achievements, and engagement of staff and students. The Energy Efficiency Coordinator regularly monitors and reports energy usage data to the school community. In the first two years of the program, the district achieved a 13% reduction in electricity usage and a 2% reduction in natural gas usage for an overall reduction of 7% in energy usage. This has resulted in almost $127,000 in avoided energy costs to the district. Several of the district’s schools have been recognized for their achievements stemming from the energy program including Three Bridges School earning the National Green Ribbon School award from the U.S. Department of Education in 2014 and Readington Middle School earning a silver award in 2015 through the National Wildlife Federation’s Eco Schools program. The Energy Efficiency Program includes education programs and activities for the school community as well as outreach to the local Readington community. Students have participated in poster contests and energy assemblies, one of which introduced an Energy Hog character. The Energy Efficiency Coordinator regularly goes into classrooms to educate staff and students about energy use in school with energy fact game shows as well as a Watts Up activity which uses a watt meter to illustrate how much electricity devices use over time. Middle School students can participate in an Energy Club which monitors classrooms to ensure lights and electronics are turned off at the end of the day as well as investigates renewable energy sources. In addition, the school district has participated in Readington Community Day sharing displays about energy conservation and green efforts.

    Innovative Project #2

    10 Points School District

    Program Summary:

    At Three Bridges School, we have implemented a Go Green program for the entire school community. It is led by staff at the school and is dedicated to promoting a sustainable culture in the school, educating the students about being good stewards of the environment, and furthering environmental efforts at the school. The Go Green program began in 2013, and several of the student projects can be viewed on the school's website. This Go Green initiative was the springboard for the school to participate in the NJ Green Ribbon Schools program. Three Bridges School not only won the 2014 NJ and National Green Ribbon, in 2015 the school was recognized by the National Wildlife Federation's Eco School program for its green efforts with a Green Flag award, the highest award offered by the program. Most recently, Green Week was held at the school and celebrated the environment with theme days, sapling plantings, green poster projects, and tips for saving energy on the morning announcements. Go Green projects are communicated with the community through the school's website along with newspaper articles. The Go Green program continues to encourage a culture of sustainability at the school and looks forward to new initiatives in the coming years. Attached are the newspaper articles celebrating the school's accomplishments, a screen shot of the website celebrating Go Green and a mural on the wall outside the cafeteria. "Join the TBS Green Tiger Team" . The students are excited to be Green tigers!

  • Learning Environment

    Curriculum Mapping

    20 Points School District

    Program Summary:

    As described in the School Gardens section of this application, Three Bridges School has a very vibrant garden which all students participate in planting, caring for, harvesting and consuming the produce. A curriculum map which details how the grade levels are involved is uploaded into this application. TBS also enlists the help from parents in the community for their service and expertise. We have a parent who is an organic farmer who assists with know-how and planting schedules (Barbara Corbin).

    Student Participation in the Arts

    10 Points District

    Program Summary:

    Readington Township School District is committed to academically supporting district-wide participation in the arts at its four school locations. Whitehouse School, Three Bridges School, Holland Brook School, and Readington Middle School accomplish this by assuring that every elementary and middle school student is enrolled in music and visual arts classes. Students are required to demonstrate competency in at least one arts discipline during the previous school year. The attached letter from Superintendent Dr. Sargent attests to the districts support for the arts.

  • School Grounds

    Green Infrastructure Installation

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    Three Bridges School has two gardens for the use of the students and staff. There is an internal courtyard which houses our sensory garden. Plants, flowers and herbs are planted there and a waterfall are in the garden to tantalize and stimulate the senses. The garden, of course, needs to be watered. A rain barrel was installed there in 2013 in order to allow use the rainwater runoff from the roof to nourish our plants. Outside the school is a vegetable garden used by the students in the school's curriculum. A rain barrel is located adjacent to the garden. The students also use the roof runoff to water our vegetables. The rain barrels have been shared with the community through the school magazine. You will find the letter attached

  • Student & Community Outreach

    Civic & Stewardship Volunteer Initiatives

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    Three Bridges School Student Voice is the school's student leadership club open to all third graders. Student Voice Members meet during recess time throughout the year. They work on projects in school, such as watering the garden, helping kindergarten and first grade students with their reading and math, and as well as organizing school-wide philanthropic projects. Below are projects that the Three Bridges School Student Voice organized for our school: After reading an article in the local newspaper about the local food pantry in need of items, our Student Voice Members held a collection for the Flemington Food Pantry. Together, they collected over 1,000 items that were donated to the Pantry. In December, our Student Voice Members held a PJ Drive where they collected new pajamas and new books. They worked with the Pajama Program. http://www.pajamaprogram.org/ All items were donated to SAFE in Hunterdon. The Three Bridges School students and teachers ended the drive with a school-wide pajama day to celebrate their efforts. In January, Student Voice Members held a "Souper Bowl Can Drive" at our school. They collected 700 cans of soup that were donated to the Flemington Food Pantry. Three Bridges School also participated in Jump Rope for Heart. Our students raised $11,000 for the American Heart Association.

    Enrichment Programs through Partnership

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    Three Bridges School offers many enrichment activities to help the students explore activities and ideas that are interesting and exciting to them. We use this opportunity to instill our beliefs and values in to the students by providing activities to explore which will enhance their knowledge of sustainability and conservation. Sap to Syrup Activity Three Bridges School partnered with Raritan Valley Community College professor, Dr. Jay Kelly and his students to bring the students, families and teachers to the forest adjacent to the school for a an experience in tree sap tapping. The maple trees behind the school are over taking the forest. This particular maple tree is not indigenous to New Jersey;it is a European variety, and it is endangering the other trees. After school, 116 students and many teachers and parents crossed the snowy school fields to the forest to witness tree tapping, sap collection and then how the sap is turned into syrup. Attached is the flyer advertising the event and the newspaper article featuring this fun and informative time. Student Voice (SV) is a recess time club for third grade students. The students apply for membership by writing an essay as to why the student is a good choice as a student leader. The efforts of the club focus on civic actions (fund raisers and items collections), SEE Squad to check energy use and abuse at TBS. In addition, the SV serves as stewards of the gardens by watering, weeding and assisting with the school's composting efforts. Student Voice voiced their opinions as to the clubs offered at TBS. Once a week third graders were given the opportunity to attend a club - Theater, Technology, Fitness and Young Authors. The clubs were then led by teachers and aides in the school for a stipend. The clubs meet once a week for an hour after school. Each club consisted of approximately 15 - 20 participants. Attached you will find a Virtual Backpack blurb about the clubs along with the registration forms. Mini-Courses Our H.S.A. creates a large menu of after courses which span interests from arts and crafts to animal care, learning about reptiles, plants and nature, horses, etc. (See attached offerings)This is a very well attended event, 145 students attended the first week, and 150 attended the second week. Each year, Three Bridges School hosts Family Math and Family Science. This is a voluntary nighttime event led by two teachers for each. The teachers are paid a stipend for their time. The families participate in group projects which feature math ad science problems and phenomenons. 24 Families participate.

    Green Challenges

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    Three Bridges School utilized the CLASS 5's Schools for Energy Efficiency ® (SEE) program which is a national award-winning, program that helps K-12 schools save energy and money by changing behavior throughout a district. Savings are immediate and sustainable through their unique approach, which incorporates strategies for increasing operational efficiency as well as educating and engaging staff and students. Our See Squad consisted of 3rd grade students. All 3rd grade students were allowed to participate during their recess time. See Squad met weekly with a lead teacher. Our Green Challenge was for the entire year starting in October and had the goal of reducing electricity usage by 10%. During recess time, the students and teachers were responsible for turning off lights and other electronic equipment (computers and smartboards) along with closing doors to conserve energy when not in the room. Our goal was to help teachers maintain a routine when leaving the classroom that would occur throughout the day not just during lunch and recess time. The majority of students adopted a class job for the specific purpose of conserving energy. The See Squad wore name badges to identify themselves as they walked around the building looking for empty classrooms. Students placed WOW stickers on classrooms with all equipment off and doors closed. Students placed OOPS stickers on classrooms that left some equipment on. Students tracked and recorded data on a tracking sheet. Each month a classroom winner was announced on the morning announcements. Attached, you will find the year long data created and maintained by our third grade Student Voice. Our program instilled the importance of energy efficiency during school hours but also encourage students to educate their family members at home. Attached you will find the posters that we hung around the school to remind each student to help our school save on energy costs. Below, you will find a video link created by the teachers at Three Bridges School on ways we can help keep our planet healthy and green. The video was shown during lunch periods for all students. Students discussed ideas and ways they conserve energy and protect our planet not only at school but at home as well. http://www.readington.k12.nj.us/domain/359 A results poster showing the energy reduction was posted in the school and gave energy results by quarter. During the school year, Three Bridges School reduced its electricity usage by 16%, exceeding our 10% goal!

    Green Fair

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    Each year, Three Bridges School hosts a Science Fair for all students kindergarten through third grade. The students choose the topics to research and design experiments. We hosted a Science Fair where we promoted "Green" projects. Those students participating in a green projects were displayed in a special area with green Balloons and banners. The students were also awarded an additional ribbon on their project. Green in color, of course. Three Bridges School partnered with the H.S.A. (Home and School Association) to absorb the costs of the ribbons and room decor. An announcement and thank you was made at the event thanking their support in promoting science and green education. The school's presentation area is too small to accommodate all the participants, so we have two nights of the fair. The evenings are divided by grade level. To conserve energy and fuel, families were encouraged to have all the children in their family present on the same evening to avoid multiple trips. Green Fair - Slideshow https://vimeo.com/88669468

    Green Team

    10 Points Bronze Mandatory School District

    Program Summary:

    The Readington Township Public School District has a long term commitment to sustainability and has utilized Green Committees over the years to provide stewardship as environmental initiatives have presented themselves. In January 2015, the Green Committee at the district level as well as Green Teams at each of the district’s four schools became formalized and began moving forward with leadership for the Sustainable Jersey for Schools program. The district Green Committee served to steer the efforts taking place in the district while the school Green Teams evaluated implementation in their specific schools. Each group included a diverse membership from administration, teachers, nurses, facilities, and the community. Included in the membership are two representatives from the Readington Township Education Association. The attached annual reports from the district and from the school highlight accomplishments to date and look forward to where their efforts will be focused in the coming year.

  • Student Learning

    Education for Sustainability 1st Grade

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    Natural resources are the raw materials supplied by nature. Everything produced, used and thrown away originates from natural resources. People cannot create natural resources. Even though we use natural resources in our daily activities, we often do not even think of them as being resources. This first grade unit focuses on creating awareness for what natures provides to us and how we we need to conserve, reduce and reuse, especially if we want resources available for the future. Having young students understand how we use natural resources and the consequences of not having them, it will provide incentive and understanding to shape their current and future decision making. Our children hold the Earth in their hands!

    Education for Sustainability 2nd Grade

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    Second grade at Three Bridges School focused on upcycling. The lessons reinforce the importance of being a good global citizen and making good choices when it comes to what we buy and how we reuse the items and packaging once its purpose is completed. Attached you will find the lesson, a picture of the hands-on project and the rubric used to evaluate the group work.

    Education for Sustainability 3rd Grade

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    This year, the third graders at Three Bridges School were focused on being good citizens to our planet earth. In and out of the classroom, students were challenged to take part in community programs to sustain a clean environment. Specifically, third graders focused on how they could help save water and increase environmental awareness. After watching videos and completing surveys, students planted trees, wrote essays, and only used reusable water bottles. Attached, please find two student essays showcasing these ideas.

    Education for Sustainability Kindergarten

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    Teachers and students at TBS focus on items which are and are not recyclable. For many of our young students this year is the first time they need need take ownership of their actions when it comes to disposing of waste. Many students know they recycle but because their parents often do this for the children, they do not know when faced with the situation themselves. The kindergarten team is determined to teach the students which items they can be recycled. The students are then required to sort their waste at school properly in the lunch and the classroom. The recycling unit of study creates good habits in the students that will last a lifetime. Hopefully, the students are able to influence the adults in their lives as well!

  • Student and Staff Wellness

    Programs to Promote Physical Activity

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    Three Bridges School very actively and collaboratively plans events to promote physical activity. Below are examples of some of our programs to promote physical education. All students K-3 participate fully in all the below activities. Tennis: TBS received grants from the United Stated Tennis Association and the Middle States Tennis Association to create three tennis court(10 and Under sized). Students play at recess and as a unit in physical education class. A local tennis pro volunteered his time to offer group lessons at recess (all students received the free lessons). The Readington Recreation Program partnered with the school to offer tennis classes at low cost right after school on our courts. (28 students participated with Rec) First Tee Program: Barclays Bank provided the funding for the lesson plans and golfing equipment for a beginner program at TBS. The physical education teachers received training and then taught golf and character ed during the students' phys ed classes. The county golf course advertised the First Tee Program at our local county golf course. Jump Rope for Heart TBS raised $11,000 by jumping rope at recess. The students learned the importance of exercise and rope jumping to keep your heart healthy. To add to the excitement, TBS has a multi-year event with Ocean Township High School. The High School's Double Dutch team does an all day workshop with our students. They have demonstrations and lessons. This event promotes rope jumping as a fun exercise. The TBS students are quite good! We also had a former TBS student who is competitive jump roper do a whole school assembly where she demonstrated her single jumper tricks and explained how she trains. The students are very enthused about jumping rope at TBS. The Girls on the Run Program is also offered after school, twice a week in both the Fall and the Spring to third grade girls. All Three Bridges students and families are invited to participate in the 5K race at the end of each season. As part of our Green Apple Day of Service Project, Three Bridges School joined forces with CASA SHaW, Court Appointed Special Advocates of Somerset, Hunterdon, and Warren Counties (CASA SHaW). On September 27, 2014, teachers and students took part in their “Be a Superhero for Kids” 5k run and 1-mile walk at Deerpath Park in Flemington. Here is the link to the video of our former Three Bridges School student jump rope performance for the entire school: https://vimeo.com/119551490

    School Wellness Council

    10 Points Bronze Priority Silver Priority School

    Program Summary:

    Three Bridges School has a very active Wellness Committee. This group is led by the nurse who finds amazing resources for our school and shares out her awesome ideas. This year, TBS - through the Wellness Committee, organized many events: Dental Health Month - Visit from local orthodontist, Dr. Darren Loew to teach third graders about dental health practices and importance. Hand Washing Lessons - the Nurse visited each kindergarten class and conducted a lesson on how to properly wash hands. The students were able to see how many germs were left behind by quick, inefficient washing. Anti-Bulling efforts were focused on bus behavior. The guidance counselor taught bus rules and safely at lunch and then followed up with each bus. The students signed poster contracts pledging they would follow the rules during the school wide Week of Respect. The committee also planned Wellness Week which was established by Board Policy and crafted at the building level. We focused on exercise and Sun Safety. Give-aways were obtained from Hunterdon Medical Center for distribution, including bracelets that turn color when sunblock is needed and floppy Australian style hats. We even found videos from Australia of their Slip Slap Slop campaign to raise awareness to slip on a shirt, slap on a hat and slop on some sunscreen. These videos were shared at recess. We hope the efforts and teachings from TBS will help form healthy habits for the children and their families.

    Staff Wellness Program

    10 Points School District

    Program Summary:

    Staff wellness is very important at TBS. We want healthy and happy staff members. We provide many services such as yearly Flu Shots (see email from nurse), Flexible Spending for health and child care (see attachment) and our health plans offer rewards for taking care of yourself. (See Amerihealth Commit2Wellness Rewards attached). The school nurse also organizes the Biggest Loser Weight loss staff club. The third session this school year yielded a group loss of over 40 lbs. (see sign up form attached). Losing together and making a fun competition keeps people motivated. 23 staff members participated in American Cancer Society Relay for Life. They walked and raised awareness for cancer prevention. (See Newspaper article attached) The school district offers exercise and nutrition classes during in-service and Teacher Academy day. (see brochure attached) We participate in Heart Health Month by celebrating Red Dress by making a donation and wearing red dress pins. The nurse routinely sends out newsletters to address staying healthy while working with small children (see example)

  • Waste Management & Recycling

    Materials Reuse

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    Action1 Book Swap Description of Implementation Three Bridges School holds a Book Swap to promote the reuse of books. This action was designed for the student body, with an overall goal of having students obtain “new-to-them” reading material for the coming summer months. The program was initiated by the School Librarian. The goal was accomplished by first advertising the Book Swap. Notices were distributed electronically using the school’s weekly eBlast and posters were hung in all classrooms. The Librarian used instruction time to describe the swap to all classes and related the information to teachers so that it could be reinforced in the classroom. The students were given a month’s notice to collect their books for the swap. Students were informed that one book from what they brought in would be donated to children in need. Students were given time to “shop” during their lunch period for the designated number of books that they could take back home. 118 Students Participated by swapping 826 books. Action 2 The Readington Twp. Schools H.S.A. holds several clothing drives a year. The drives are well publicized and the organization earns money per pound of items (clothing, shoes, coats, linens). The total for last year's clothing drive for the district was $3387.00

    Recycling Non-Mandated Materials

    10 Points School

    Program Summary:

    Action 1 Terracycle Three Bridges School utilizes Terracycle. We are signed up for the TerraCycle Personal Care and Beauty Brigade. We collect empty hair care, skincare, and cosmetic product packaging. TBS also participates in the TerraCycle Lil' Bites wrapper recycling program. Students put their Lil' Bites wrappers in a bin an we ship them to TerraCycle. The emphasis on healthy eating has limited the amount of Lil' Bites the students eat! so our numbers are low in that area. We also collect Elmers Glue and Scotch tape empty containers for TerraCycle. Action 2 At Three Bridges School, our HSA (Home School Association) recycles all used ink cartridges and toners. Our HSA uses CFK (Cartridges for Kids) to recycle our used ink cartridges and various electronic devices (see flyer for all items). CFK pays our H.S.A. for all received items. Attached, you will find a picture of our ink cartridge collection container. You will also find a Back to School Night presentation from a second grade classroom with a slide promoting our TerraCycle recycling program (slide 21). All teachers were required to include this in their back to school night presentations.