On April 26, King County Executive Dow Constantine recognized students, staff members, and parents who won the prestigious “Earth Hero” award this year for their work spreading an environmental ethic at schools.
“These stewards of the environment are our heroes— for conserving resources, protecting the environment, and spreading the word about sustainable practices,” said Constantine. “I am proud to recognize them for their hands-on commitment to the planet.”
More information about the program
The Issaquah School District 2012 Earth Heroes are:
- Renee de Tolla and Ashley Hirst, Grand Ridge Elementary School, Issaquah School District
Through Renee and Ashley’s efforts, Grand Ridge Elementary moved from level one to level two in the King County Green School s Program. Renee and Ashley also helped ensured the installation of solar panels and a wind turbine at the school. Renee’s third-grade class is also recognized for its many environmental projects to increase recycling, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and protect salmon.
- Issaquah Valley Elementary School, Issaquah School District
Issaquah Valley Elementary, in coordination with the City of Issaquah, created an eco-leaders program for fifth-graders. Four times a year, fifth grade students teach environmental topics to other classes in the school. They initiated a waste-free lunch day during which the school’s 475 students generated a total of only seven gallons of waste. The recycling rate for the past year rose from 44 to 54 percent.
- Newcastle Elementary School, Issaquah School District
A King County Green School since 2009, Newcastle Elementary ensures its recycling and composting programs thrive through its Waste Watchers, students who monitor the lunchroom containers to ensure proper sorting. Staff meeting notes are no longer printed, and teachers and students work together to post signs about conserving resources. Newcastle has increased its recycling rate from 50 to 60 percent.
top; Grand Ridge: Grand Ridge teachers Renee De Tolla and Ashley Hirst and program assistant Leslie Lederman (from left) with King County Executive Dow Constantine
center; Issaquah Valley: Issaquah Valley Principal Diane Holt and custodian Dusty Duke with King County Executive Dow Constantine
bottom; Newcastle Elementary: Newcastle educational assistant Annette Brown, principal Marla Newton, and teacher Kathy Keegan (from left) with King County Executive Dow Constantine