As the only national conference bringing together experts and stakeholders to influence sustainability throughout K-12 schools and school districts, the annual Green Schools National Conference has grown in terms of attendance and scope. Colleagues who share their passion and offer their own green schools experiences collaborate with thought leaders and early adopters of green school best practices. Attendees are passionate about transforming schools. The annual conference is designed to share creative strategies for success so attendees can take home real-life tools that can transform schools.
“This year’s Green Schools National Conference focuses on how any K-12 educational institution—private, public, charter, or public charter—can adopt very simple, affordable practices to green their school,” says Jennifer Seydel, executive director of Green Schools National Network. “As the Virginia Beach district has demonstrated, it doesn’t take a multi-million dollar budget or years of planning. It only takes a commitment and can begin with easy-to-implement programs and policies that can make a big difference.”
Antioch’s David Sobel will lead two breakout sessions. During his first session “Nature-based Early Childhood in North America” on March 5 at 10:00 am, participants will explore the academification of kindergarten in the United States and the growing movement to “naturalize” early childhood with a focus on helping children develop initiative and grit. The session will include an outdoors activity, as well as a discussion about the value of letting children get their hands dirty and their feet wet.
Sobel will also participate as a co-presenter in “Updating the National Action Plan or Educating for Sustainability” on Thursday at 2:00 pm along with Jaimie Cloud, president, The Cloud Institute for Sustainability Education; Lisa Kensler, associate professor, Auburn University; and Jenny Wiedower, K-12 manager, The Center for Green Schools at USGBC. During this session, attendees will work along Work alongside the leading minds and the strongest champions of sustainability education to make updates and modifications to the National Action Plan for Educating for Sustainability, and understand your unique role and contribution to advancing the shared vision of graduating all students educated for sustainability by 2040.
More than 1,200 attendees are expected including people from all walks of “green” including teachers, students, school administrators from all levels, business community leaders, architects, environmental services, consultants, corporate partners, curriculum specialists, custodial supervisors, governmental agencies, environmental educators, finance specialists, school food service personnel, green building professionals, green team members, school habitat specialists, transportation managers, parents, health and safety coordinators, sustainability managers, and many others.
The Green Schools National Network has created a “culture of collaboration,” as a result of year-round networking and partnerships, and through an annual national conference. We bring together like-minded people committed to the creation and support of healthy, green and sustainable schools.
For more information on the upcoming conference and the complete schedule, visit greenschoolsnationalnetwork.org/conference/
About the Green Schools National Network: The Green Schools National Network (GSNN) advances the national green and healthy schools movement by connecting like-minded and passionate education, non-profit, corporate and public sector individuals and organizations. GSNN is nationally recognized as the premier partner in advancing collaboration to integrate a green and healthy culture in schools and ensure that current and future generation of students are environmentally literate as well as practice and promote sustainability in their community.