NEW JERSEY DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION

ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION NEWS


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CONTENTS:
The Time is NOW to Start Planning your Certification and Recertification
Green Knight Newsletter - February 2017
River-Friendly Reflections
CWF: February E-News 2017
NAAEE: Environmental Education Research Bulletin
Great Places: Core Principles for a Time of Change
Children & Nature Research Digest | January 2017
Combat News Fatigue With Winter Gardening!
February Littoral News
Raritan Headwaters: Think Spring!
Bald Eagle Annual Report Posted
SJ E-News: Hooray for the 78%
States Nominate for 2017 ED-GRS by February 1
Green Knight newsletter - Upcoming events for January
American Littoral Society: A Brand New Website
CWFNJ: January E-News 2017
SJ4S: Is Your Green Team Ready for Certification?
NAAEE: eeNEWS for January 11, 2017
January Littoral News
Raritan Headwaters Newsletter: Happy New Year!
The Nature Conservancy - Great Places: Sparks of Hope in 2016
Duke Farms: Community Garden Plots Available
D&R Greenway Land Trust: As we enter 2017, a look back on this year's accomplishments
Guest Blogs and Commentary from the New Nature Movement
NRPA report-survey results
Children & Nature Research Digest | December 2016
'Tis the Season for School Ambassador Fellows & Director's Award Nominations
Science Update: Saving Loons
SJ4S: Making Progress on Arts Actions
CWFNJ: December E-News 2016
Great Places: You Helped Save Their Home
Guest Blogs and Commentary from the New Nature Movement
December Littoral News
The Time is NOW to Start Planning your Certification and Recertification             (Posted: 2-17-17)

Click HERE.

Green Knight Newsletter - February 2017             (Posted: 2-17-17)

Click HERE.

River-Friendly Reflections             (Posted: 2-10-17)

Click HERE.

CWF: February E-News 2017             (Posted: 2-10-17)

OSPREYS CONTINUE REMARKABLE 
SUCCESS IN NEW JERSEY 
Six week-old ospreys sit in a nest while an adult watches from above. 
Sedge Island Wildlife Management Area. July 2016. Photo by Eric Sambol.
Over the past decade, Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey has conducted annual nesting surveys for ospreys while working in close partnership with New Jersey's Endangered and Nongame Species Program. These surveys, performed each summer during the peak of their nesting season, cover around 80% of the known population. Results from these surveys help guide conservation efforts to keep the population at a sustainable level. The annual surveys would not be possible without the dedication of our volunteer osprey banders and citizen scientists who monitor nests and report nesting activity online at www.osprey-watch.org. In 2017, the first statewide annual census will be conducted to help get a more accurate estimate of the size and health of the entire population.

Our findings from the past year reveal a total of 515 active nests were documented. A total of 670 young were produced from 376 known-outcome nests, and 361 young were banded by volunteers and staff with USGS leg bands for future tracking. The majority of nests are along the Atlantic Coast, while the most productive nests are located along the Delaware Bayshore. 

Check out the 2016 New Jersey Osprey Project Report for in-depth details about the season.
 
CWF BIOLOGISTS TRAVEL TO BRAZIL TO STUDY RED KNOTS
FOCUS ON THE LARGEST SHOREBIRD POPULATION IN HEMISPHERE
CWF's Shorebird Project Team is at the largest mangrove forest in the world on the Brazilian coastline near the mouth of the Amazon River. The forest extends out into the Atlantic Ocean in long peninsulas tipped by wind swept and mostly inaccessible beaches. The forest, beaches and their long intertidal mud and sandy low tide flats support the largest wintering population of shorebirds in the hemisphere, perhaps the world. The red knot, a listed species in both North and South America, also uses this remote tropical coast. The team will be in the field for the next month surveying the shorebirds and studying their wintering grounds. 

Photo courtesy of Mark Peck.

RARE WILDLIFE REVEALED 
Pine Barrens Tree Frog by James Fiorentino
WHERE CAN YOU FIND THE JAMES FIORENTINO TRAVELING ART EXHIBITION?
Rare Wildlife Revealed: The James Fiorentino Traveling Art Exhibition is currently at the Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown, New Jersey. The exhibit will be displayed here until February 28. 

 
MARK YOUR CALENDARS
NEW JERSEY'S "FISH HAWK": THE AMAZING OSPREY
Photo courtesy of Northside Jim.

Did you know that in 1974 only 50 osprey nests were left in New Jersey? Today, ospreys are a common sight along the New Jersey shore during the summer. Join us to learn about the life history of ospreys, current monitoring techniques, and their amazing comeback. CWF Habitat Program Manager Ben Wurst will share his experience from working to managing this amazing species over the past 10+ years.

Ben will present at the Upper Branch of Cape May County Library on Thursday, February 9 from 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM.
Golden winged warbler
CALLING ALL FOREST LANDOWNERS IN NORTH JERSEY
There will be a workshop on planning and financial assistance opportunities for forest landowners on Wednesday, February 15 at the Sussex County Library Main Branch from 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM. Learn about managing your forestland to create critical habitat for a variety of wildlife species that are currently in decline, and learn technical and financial assistance available to help create young forest habitat on your property.

Contact Kelly Triece for more information or to register for the workshop at 908-852-2576 ext 7524 or kelly.triece@nj.usda.gov.
FIELD EXPERIENCES FOR CHILDREN
KIDS SUMMER PROGRAMS
CWF is proud to offer three week-long learning experiences for children throughout the Garden State for summer 2017.
Learn more about our summer programs below and sign up today!
 
BOY & GIRL SCOUT PROGRAMS
CWF's Scout Programs offers a variety of outdoor educational and recreational field experiences to help New Jersey's Scouts earn their badges while exploring the wonderful diversity of our state's wildlife and the habitats they live, breed and migrate through. CWF is dedicated to helping kids become stewards of our environment to ensure that we are "Keeping Wildlife in our Future."
Learn more about how to get your Scouts involved and sign up today!

NAAEE: Environmental Education Research Bulletin             (Posted: 2-8-17)

Click HERE.

Great Places: Core Principles for a Time of Change             (Posted: 2-8-17)

Click HERE.

Children & Nature Research Digest | January 2017             (Posted: 2-8-17)

Click HERE.

Combat News Fatigue With Winter Gardening!             (Posted: 2-8-17)

I. Prune Your Deciduous Trees and Vines

Effective approaches to pruning trees, vines, and shrubs vary quite widely. There is by no means a “correct” way to prune. And yet, there are some principles of plant growth that help the person with the pruning shears, loppers or saw in hand decide which decisions to make based on acute observation of the tree or vine’s growth. Read our full guide to pruning deciduous tree and vines here.

II. Cover Bare Soil with Mulch!

Mulching is an excellent way to build organic matter in the soil, prevent erosion, prevent weeds from growing, and retain moisture in the ground by preventing evaporation. Ideally, use old straw bales and wood chips, leaves and plant material from the garden as mulch.  Mulching with plant material from the garden is fine too, as long as there are no weed seeds in the mulch. For more mulching tips, check out this video, download or purchase a hard copy of Edible Gardening: 10 Essential Practices for Growing Your Own Food.

III. Plan Next Summer’s Garden

There is something incredibly comforting about sitting inside on a cold rainy (or snowy!) day, looking at beautiful images of vegetables that can only be grown in the opposite season, dreaming about what will grow in the garden next year. See our seed selection suggestions and favorite seed resources here.

Read our founder Benjamin Eichorn's recent article in Bay Nature Magazine entitled, "What Honey Bees Have Taught Me About Xenophobia."
"The American democratic experiment and the survival of the planet may depend on overcoming our fear of foreigners." 
Winter is citrus season! Check out the "Citrus Family Tree" from National Geographic. What's your favorite citrus fruit? Can you trace it back to its ancestors?
Copyright © 2017, Grow Your Lunch, LLC, All rights reserved.

February Littoral News             (Posted: 2-8-17)

Click HERE.

Raritan Headwaters: Think Spring!             (Posted: 2-1-17)

February 2017
Listen Up: Member Meeting March 2nd
     
RHA's annual member meeting will be held at the Oldwick Firehouse. Join us for dinner, a "watershed watchdog" update by Policy Director Bill Kibler and a presentation of awards to outstanding volunteers.
Invitations will be sent out in early February. If you're not a member, please consider joining the individuals and families who support RHA's mission to protect the water you rely on.
NJ Land Conservation Rally Set for March 17
 
RHA's Education Director Lauren Theis and Science Director Dr. Kristi MacDonald will lead workshops at the 21st annual New Jersey Land Conservation Rally in New Brunswick. Join us at this statewide conservation event offering education, networking, training and more!
 

Spring Community Well Testing Kicks Off
 
Find out what's in your water! We're pleased to welcome Washington Twp and Chester to our growing list of Community Well Test partners!
 
Visit our Spring schedule to see where and when you can pick up a test kit. Check back often as some participating municipalities have not yet announced their sale and drop-off dates.


Spend Earth Day with RHA!
           
Join our annual Stream Cleanup on Saturday, April 22, at a site near you!  Last year, 1,350 volunteers removed 14 tons of trash from our waterways. Registration is now open, so sign up today!
Watch for news of our Boots & Bar-B-Q Earth Day Party on the evening of April 22.
Nature Day Camp -- Registration Is Now Open
           
It might be winter, but we're thinking summer! Our popular nature day camps offer fun for children of all ages. The camps fill up fast, so register today!
Dip into Our Stream Data
 
We've updated the interactive stream monitoring map on our website with data from all of our 62 sites, including photos and a summary on the health of our streams over time. 
 

Calling All Scouts!
           
Girl and boy scouts have completed Gold Award and Eagle Level projects at our Fairview Farm Wildlife Preserve and other RHA preserves.
RHA welcomes individual scouts and troops to work on a variety of rewarding projects, including our "Adopt a Trail" program.
Interested? Email George Schaberg or call him at 908-234-1852, ext. 328.
On the Watchdog Front

RHA Executive Director Cindy Ehrenclou introduced former NJ Governor Jim Florio at the Green in '17 launch in Trenton.
As a member of the Green in '17 coalition, RHA Policy Director Bill Kibler drafted a Clean Drinking Water position paper and others that will be provided to candidates for governor and the legislature during the 2017 campaign. The Green in '17 campaign is raising awareness about issues affecting environmental protection in the Garden State.
  
Did You Know?

140 species of bird have been identified at Fairview Farm.
 
Birders who frequent Fairview Farm have created a hotspot on eBird. Visit this site and you'll find we have an abundance of Eastern Bluebirds and Broad-winged Hawks, while sightings of other birds, like the American Kestrel and Bald Eagle, are more rare.
 
Events & Happenings

February 13, 20 & 27: Birding Walks at Fairview Farm with Naturalist Alan Rennie



March 9:  Woodcock Watch
 

  
April 22: Boots & Bar-B-Q Earth Day Party. Details to be announced soon!


The banner in this issue is a painting by local artist Daryl Hastings titled, "Morning at the Gorge."
Raritan Headwaters, a nonprofit conservation organization, protects clean water in the North Branch and South Branch regions of the Raritan River, serving the residents of 38 municipalities within Morris, Somerset, and Hunterdon Counties and beyond to include more than 1.5 million people who live and work in New Jersey's more urban areas.

Bald Eagle Annual Report Posted             (Posted: 1-25-17)

The 2016 Bald Eagle Project annual report is available on the NJDEP Division of Fish and Wildlife website.  The population continues to thrive with one hundred seventy-two nest sites monitored (150 documented with eggs). For the full report visit http://www.njfishandwildlife.com/ensp/raptor_info.htm#eagle .
www.njfishandwildlife.com
Bald Eagle Information. Live Eagle Cam (Conserve Wildlife Foundation of NJ) The bald eagle is a shining example of recovery in New Jersey. In 1973, when the ...

SJ E-News: Hooray for the 78%             (Posted: 1-25-17)

Click HERE.

States Nominate for 2017 ED-GRS by February 1             (Posted: 1-25-17)

Director's Award Deadline Approaching
Green Strides Design

 

          U.S. Department of Education

   Green Strides

Outdoor Play Every Day
At 2012 ED-GRS honoree North Shore Community School in Duluth, MN students play outdoors everyday.

Editor's Note

Tomorrow, our nation will observe the transition from one presidential administration to the next.  Like all other recurring publications of the Department, Green Strides will be on hiatus as it is evaluated by the incoming administration.  In the interim, visit www.ed.gov for the latest news and information. 

In the News

Gift World

The 2017 ED-Green Ribbon Schools Director’s Award: Nominations Due March 1st

The Director’s Award recognizes state education authorities’ exemplary efforts to administer U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools (ED-GRS).  Annually, the Director’s Award goes to the state education official who does the most to advance sustainable education in his or her state, by such means as running a robust nomination process; connecting more schools, districts, and postsecondary institutions to sustainability resources; amplifying the stories of honorees; helping schools, districts, and postsecondary institutions connect and learn from one another; partnering with a variety of state and non- and for-profit private sector entities; and exhibiting a dedication to exceptional school facilities, health, and environmental education through activities outside of the award.  If you wish to nominate a state education official, please send your nomination and justification to ed.green.ribbon.schools@ed.gov by March 1st.  Any state education official who is involved in implementing the ED-GRS award and who has not already won the Director’s Award is eligible for nomination.  Read about the past Director’s Award recipients. >>>>

Gift Plant

States Nominate Now and ED-Green Ribbon Schools Announces 2017 Honorees in April

Participating state education authorities are nominating schools, districts, and postsecondary institutions to U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools (ED-GRS) by Feb. 1 and ED will announce the 2017 cohort around Earth Day.  Now is a great time to begin preparing for the 2018 application cycle by using resources and programs on Green Strides and to contact your state authority if it does not already make nominations.  Read some common misconceptions about the award dispelled in a blog by the director and review Frequently Asked Questions on all three award categories.  For future cycles, interested colleges and universities should contact state higher education authorities, while schools and districts should contact state education agencies.  Schools, districts, and postsecondary institutions are only eligible if nominated by state authorities.  State education authorities can find award criteria and other state implementation guidance on the ED website and should contact U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools for more information.   >>>>

Learn from the 2016 Honorees

Resolved to make some sustainable improvements on your school in 2017? Take inspiration from the 2016 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools and learn more about their work on Green Strides.

Students performing water quality testing in outdoor classroom
Students at Egg Harbor Township High School in Egg Harbor, NJ perform water quality tests in their outdoor classroom.

Egg Harbor Township High School, Egg Harbor, N.J.

The Egg Harbor Township High School (EHTHS) green team introduced students to composting during a series of sustainability science labs and then built a schoolwide program that has students collecting, measuring, and monitoring the process.  A school garden is used as an outdoor classroom where students receive hands-on instruction in designing, planting, maintaining, and harvesting.  The campus includes a wildlife habitat, an educational pond, a rain garden, and an outdoor learning area.  Through students’ efforts, EHTHS increased its recycling by over 4,000 percent.  EHTHS reduced utility costs by 35 percent through energy management and education, as well as the installation of motion-activated and LED lights, efficient appliances, and a 454-kilowatt solar array that generates 15 percent of the school’s energy needs. Students use the data gathered to work on yearly energy projects.  EHTHS has adopted an outdoor air quality index flag program.  Course sequences in Environmental Science and Oceanography are available to all students, and a new course dedicated entirely to the concept of sustainability began last fall.  Students participate in Science League, Recycle-Bowl, and Envirothon competitions.  >>>>

Students gain hands-on experience at LUMCON
Students from Baton Rouge Magnet High School in Baton Rouge, LA gain hands-on experience at the Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium.

Baton Rouge Magnet High School, Baton Rouge, La.

The original Baton Rouge Magnet High School (BRMHS) building was constructed in 1926, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.  2012 renovations included energy- and water-saving retrofits, leading to a 60 percent reduction in energy use, improved air quality, and a 70 percent water use reduction.  BRMHS has a full-time nurse on staff who coordinates hearing and vision checks, the administration of flu vaccinations, and serves as a sponsor for the Healthy Lifestyles club.  All students in Louisiana’s East Baton Rouge Parish are provided with a breakfast and lunch at no cost.  BRMHS uses vending machines containing salads, sandwiches, and yogurt parfait (also at no cost to students) to offer more healthy choices in addition to the school cafeteria’s hot meal option.  Over the last six years, BRMHS has seen exponential growth in environmental studies enrollment.  BRMHS now teaches 200 students Environmental Science every year and students consistently score higher than average on the AP exam.  Each year, students from the AP Environmental Science class visit a nearby elementary school to provide a hands-on lesson on sustainability and students enrolled in environmental courses are required to design and implement a service learning project. Their teachers present at the North American Association for Environmental Education conference.  >>>>

Cuyahoga Valley EE Center
Sixth grade Urban Community School students attend a four-day, three-night environmental camp at Cuyahoga Valley Environmental Education Center.

Urban Community School, Cleveland, Ohio

Urban Community School (UCS) relocated in 2005 to the near west side of Cleveland, on a brownfield consisting of an unused warehouse and its adjacent property.  The building is occupied by 550 students from preschool through grade eight, 74 percent of whom are eligible for free or reduced price lunch.  UCS features natural light, solar panels, timed computer shut-off, and water bottle refilling stations.  Recycling is routine throughout the school, and composting is underway in the early childhood wing.  UCS partnered with The Refugee Response and the Cleveland Botanical Garden to establish a half-acre learning garden that assists refugees in establishing themselves in the U.S. through produce that is sold to local restaurants.  KaBoom!, a national nonprofit that works to bring balanced and active play into the daily lives of all children, facilitated the installation of a playground designed for primary students.  MetroHealth hospital sponsors a weekly afterschool exercise program, and Urban offers karate classes to students.  Middle school students conducted a West Creek water quality project, working the U.S. EPA.  All students in the sixth grade go to the Cuyahoga Valley Environmental Education Center for a four-day, three-night environmental camp, which immerses students in watershed and sustainability concepts.  Upon returning from camp, sixth grade students develop and implement a sustainability project.  >>>>

Events

GSNN

The Green Schools National Conference & Expo is March 21-22 in Atlanta 

The Green Schools Conference and Expo (GSCE) connects green school champions nationwide for two days of learning and collaboration to support the shared mission of equitable, healthy and high-performing schools, where students can learn how to sustain and improve the world around them.  Green Schools National Network members receive a discount on registration. Learn more about membership>>>>

Lucy School '12 Honoree Class Watering

Children & Nature Network’s Conference is April 18-21 in Vancouver, CA,  

The 2017 Children & Nature Network International Conference and Summit will be held in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada from April 18 – 21, 2017. The 2017 conference theme, “Kids Need Nature, Nature Needs Kids,” reflects the Network’s goal of ensuring that all children have access to the many benefits of nature — and the need to inspire new generations of environmental stewards.  The conference will promote meaningful, cross-sector engagement to create a world in which all children have access to nature in their daily lives. >>>>

GSA Logo

Student Conservation Corps & Congress is June 25 - July 1 in Shepherdstown, WV

The Student Conservation Corps & Congress is a week-long leadership training program for 8th to 11th grade students held annually at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife’s National Conservation Training Center.  Participants spend a week studying and discussing environmental, social, and economic interconnections to address climate change and conservation challenges affecting their generation in an ever changing world.  >>>>

Resources and Opportunities

EPA

President’s Environmental Youth Awards Applications Due Mar. 1 

The President’s Environmental Youth Awards promote awareness of our nation's natural resources and encourages positive community involvement. The program includes two components: a regional certificate of special recognition and a national award competition. All qualified applicants each year receive a certificate of recognition from their EPA regional office.  In addition, one outstanding project from each region is selected to receive a national award plaque. Projects are developed by young individuals, school classes (K-12), summer camps, and youth organizations to promote environmental stewardship.  >>>> 

Webinars

Green Strides Design

The Green Strides Webinar Series Continues 

The Green Strides Webinar Series promotes sessions that provide free tools to reduce schools' environmental impact and costs; improve health and wellness; and teach effective environmental education.  Consult the webinar calendar and submit suggestions of free webinars related to school, district, and postsecondary sustainability to ed.green.ribbon.schools@ed.gov for listing.  

January 23, 4-5 p.m. Balloons and Kites for Elementary Educators (NASA)

January 24, 5-6 p.m. Portfolio Manager 101 (EPA)

January 24, 6-7 p.m. Principles of Flight (NASA)

January 24, 7-8 p.m. Future Flight Equation (NASA)

January 25, 5-5:30 p.m. Portfolio Manager – Ask The Expert (EPA)

January 25, 5-6 p.m. Portfolio Manager 201 (EPA)

January 25, 7-8 p.m. Staying Healthy in Space:  Engineering in Life Sciences (NASA)

January 26, 5-6 p.m. Portfolio Manager 301 (EPA)

January 26, 8-9 p.m.  How NASA Uses Math (NASA)

January 31, 4-5 p.m.  Teachers Connect: NASA LaRC 100 Webinar (NASA)

January 31, 6:30-7:30 p.m. Bernoulli’s Principle (NASA)

February 1, 5-5:30 p.m. Portfolio Manager – Ask The Expert (EPA)

February 1, 6:30-7:30 p.m. Detecting Exoplanets (NASA)

Connect with Green Strides

Green Strides: Resources for School Facilities, Health, and Environment
U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools
Facebook: @EDGreenRibbonSchools
Twitter:@EDGreenRibbon

Winter Forest

Green Knight newsletter - Upcoming events for January             (Posted: 1-19-17)

Click HERE.

American Littoral Society: A Brand New Website             (Posted: 1-19-17)

We Are Pleased to Announce our Brand New Website

Visit today LITTORALSOCIETY.ORG.

LITTORAL (lit'-er-al): The region along the shore, the intertidal zone

CWFNJ: January E-News 2017             (Posted: 1-13-17)

NEW REPORT REVEALS 2016 SUCCESS 
FOR NEW JERSEY BALD EAGLES
The Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey in partnership with the NJ Endangered and Nongame Species Program has released the 2016 NJ Bald Eagle Project Report and the new and improved Eagle Tracking Maps. In 2016, 172 eagle nests were monitored during the nesting
season. Of these nests 150 were active (with eggs) and 22 were territorial or housekeeping pairs. A record high of 216 young were fledged. The success of the NJ Eagle Project is due to the dedicated Eagle Project Volunteers who monitor and help to protect nests throughout New Jersey.

2016 may have come to an end, but eagles all over New Jersey are busy working on their nests in preparation for the upcoming nesting season. Duke Farms Bald Eagle pair is no exception! The Eagle Cam is up and running and the adults are sprucing up their nest for the 2017 season. Check out the Eagle Cam today! 

Stay tuned for updates of the 2016 season on CWF's blog.
NEW JERSEY HAS GAINED ANOTHER ENDANGERED SPECIES
THE RUSTY PATCHED BUMBLE BEE
Rare find, this is a species that has suffered drastic declines since the late 1990's. Photo courtesy of Dan Mullen.
The Rusty Patched Bumble Bee - a valued pollinator of wildflowers and crops - was listed as an endangered species this week after the population plummeted by 90% since the late 1990s according to the US Fish and Wildlife Service. 

The multitude of ways that we rely on pollinators - for food, clothes, ecosystem functioning - means that their peril is our own. In New Jersey, the service provided by wild pollinators is valued at $43 million; in the U.S. as a whole, they are worth $3 billion annually. Since the rusty patch (along with other species of bumble bees) is an excellent pollinator of New Jersey crops like blueberries, cranberries, and tomatoes, it is sorely missed from the Garden State.
SUCCESS FOR PIPING PLOVER POPULATION
All of New Jersey's breeding piping plovers are now settled on their wintering grounds in the Southeast U.S. and the Bahamas. The highlights of the 2016 season include a 25% increase in the statewide population over the past two years and three consecutive years of above-average chick production! For a more in-depth look at the season's nesting results, check out the

 
CALLING ALL TEACHERS AND EDUCATORS
BALD EAGLE ECOLOGY FOR TEACHERS (K-12)
Join Conserve Wildlife Foundation's wildlife biologist Larissa Smith on January 21 at Duke Farms from 9AM - 3PM to learn how to use the Eagle Cam to teach about ecology, endangered species or animal adaptations. Larissa has been involved in the state's Bald Eagle Monitoring Project since 2000 and is dedicated to educating the public about how to protect this magnificent species. 

Conserve Wildlife Foundation and Duke Farms will help you to enhance your understanding of the science behind New Jersey's bald eagle management program and discover the many ways this technology can be used in your classroom. Live birds of prey will make an appearance and an opportunity will be announced for one teacher to participate in the spring eagle chick banding at Duke Farms. Register Online for $25.
WILDLIFE CAMS IN THE CLASSROOM
CWF, Duke Farms, and our two winning Eagle Cam Lesson Plan Contest Teachers, Diane Cook and Lauren Kurzius, will be presenting Wildlife Cams in the Classroom at this year's ANJEE conference on January 19 and 20. We hope you will join us! Learn More.


TIGER SALAMANDER SEASON
Volunteers survey for this rare and elusive New Jersey salamander. 

SEVENTH-GRADERS PROTECT BATS
Princeton students partner with CWF to design better bat houses.
 
 

SJ4S: Is Your Green Team Ready for Certification?             (Posted: 1-13-17)

SUSTAINABLE JERSEY FOR SCHOOLS
232 Districts     579 Schools     Participating
January 18th 2017
The First Step in Sustainable Jersey for Schools Certification
 
Schools seeking to become bronze or silver certified with the Sustainable Jersey for Schools program for 2017 are encouraged to take advantage of multiple review periods in the application cycle. Incremental submission of application materials allows your green team to receive valuable feedback on your efforts as you accumulate points towards certification.  

2017 Certification Application Deadlines
January 18, 2017
-First 2017 Application Submission Deadline
April 10, 2017
 Second 2017 Application Submission Deadline
June 29, 2017
-Third (FINAL) 2017 Application Submission Deadline

Check out these past webinar presentations for tips, tricks, and instructions for a successful submission: 
Preparing for Certification (access narrated recording here)
Is Your Green Team Ready for Certification? 
 
The formation of a "green team" is the first step in establishing a school sustainability program. Green teams leverage the skills and expertise of team members to develop plans, implement programs, and assist with educational opportunities that support the creation of a sustainable school. All schools participating in the Sustainable Jersey for Schools program must establish a green team or be active participants on a district green team. Sufficient green team documentation is required for all grant applications and is a mandatory action requirement on all certification applications.  The Green Team action documentation requirements include:
  1. Submit only one of the following sets of documentation: 
    • District Green Team: Letter from superintendent that formally establishes the green team. Letter must include district green team members' names and titles and affiliations, and the date the team members were appointed to the committee. Each registered school in the district must have at least one representative on the district green Team. Please be sure to clearly identify the two green team members who were selected by the district union leadership.              OR:
    • District and Individual Green Teams established: Letter from superintendent that formally establishes the green team. Letter must include district green team members' names and titles and affiliations, and the date the team members were appointed to the committee. Also, please provide a letter from each participating school principal that formally establishes their school green team. The school green team appointment letter must include school green team members' names and titles and affiliations and the date the team members were appointed to the team. Letters from both the district and all school green teams registered with the program must be provided. Please be sure to clearly identify the two green team members who were selected by the relevant union leadership for each green team.           OR:
    • School Green Team: Letter from principal that formally establishes the green team. Letter must include green team members' names and titles and affiliations and the date the team members were appointed to the team. This submission requirement applies when no district green team is established. Schools will be responsible for submitting their Green Team Action documentation. Please be sure to clearly identify the two green team members who were selected by the union leadership for your school.
2.  Upload a Green Team Annual Report that includes a summary of activities undertaken by the green team over the previous twelve months that meets the submission requirements noted in "Annual Report Content Requirements" above. The summary should include a list of meetings (at least four annually after the initial establishment year), activities and efforts of the green team, and may also evaluate the team's progress and effectiveness, and identify priorities and focuses for the upcoming year. Please note the green team needs to have met at least quarterly. If your green team has been recently established, please submit a summary of the activities undertaken by the green team since it was established.

Check out this helpful Green Team webinar  & presentation slides on our past webinars page for more helpful hints! You can also see examples of how other certified schools document their green teams using the "search by action" search function on our participating schools map. 
Reminder: PSEG Sponsored Sustainable Jersey for Schools Grant Applications due February 3, 2017
    
Visit the Sustainable Jersey for Schools Grants & Resources page to learn more about funding for registered schools to support action related sustainability initiatives. Grants are available at the $2,000 and $10,000 level. If your school has not received a $2,000 capacity building grant from Sustainable Jersey for Schools, we strongly suggest viewing the informational webinar and submitting an application for 2017. 

Application Deadline is February 3, 2017. Click here for more information. 
Welcome Newly Registered Schools & Districts!
Bergen County
Teaneck Community Charter School
 
Camden County 
Winslow Township School No. 1 Elementary
Winslow Township School No. 2 Elementary
Winslow Township School No. 4 Elementary
Winslow Township School No. 5 Elementary
Winslow Township School No. 6 Elementary

Somerset County
Somerville Public School District

Gloucester County
Bells Elementary School (Washington)
Charles G. Harker School (Swedesboro-Woolwich)
Gov. Charles C. Stratton School (Swedesboro-Woolwich)
Margaret C. Clifford School (Swedesboro-Woolwich)
Walter Hill School (Swedesboro-Woolwich)

Morris County
Morris School District

Field Trip New Jersey Grants
                                  Deadline February 10th
 
Educators at schools in districts serving a majority of low-income students may apply for grants of up to $700 to cover transportation costs for field trips to arts and culture sites, historical landmarks, nature preserves and science institutions in New Jersey, and to visit college campuses throughout the Mid-Atlantic region.
  • Each eligible school can apply for reimbursement for one field trip a year
  • Funds must be used during the school year in which funding is requested
  • All schools with more than 65 percent of students eligible for free or reduced lunch are eligible for FTNJ funding
  • Schools or associated bus companies will be reimbursed upon receipt of invoice
 Visit Field Trip New Jersey information page here.
 
 Application Deadline: February 10, 2017
NJ Agricultural Society Learning Through Gardening Grants
 
The NJ Agricultural Society Learning Through Gardening grant provides teachers with curriculum, training and materials for three raised beds so that they can use the school garden to teach their core curriculum, including math, social studies, language arts, and science. 

Learning Through Gardening grant is awarded to schools planning to launch a schoolwide gardening program during school hours. Grants are not awarded to schools that intend to use the garden solely for after-school or club activities. Grant recipients must assemble a garden management committee of teachers from various grade levels. Garden committees can also include administrators and other stakeholders such as custodians, cafeteria managers, and parents. Grant recipients must plan for the garden to be used by at least two grade levels during the first year, and show plans to expand the garden's use by additional grade levels in future years. Every application must be accompanied by a letter of support from the school principal.
 
Application deadline February 1. 2017
Fun Run Grants Available
 
The New Balance Foundation Billion Mile Race is challenging America's schools to collectively run, jog, and walk one billion miles. The New Balance Foundation Billion Mile Race is hosted by Active Schools Acceleration Project (ASAP), an initiative of ChildObesity180 at Tufts University Friedman School of Nutrition.  A Fun Run Grant will equip schools with materials to host a race, walk-a-thon, or fun run event for their school communities. The package includes a set of numbered race bibs, a finish line banner, wristbands for student participants, a Bluetooth speaker, an airhorn and a gift card to purchase healthy snacks like fruit and water. 
 
 Application deadline February 15. 2017
"Going Beyond the Resolution"
NJSBA Sustainability Webinar Series for Board Leaders
 
The New Jersey School Boards Association has designed a free webinar series for school board members that seek a deeper understanding of sustainability, beyond the resolution signed to participate in the Sustainable Jersey for Schools Certification Program. Green team members are encouraged to participate in these webinars, as the success of implementing sustainable practices improves with a better understanding by everyone involved in supporting them.

FUTURE WEBINARS IN THE SERIES: 
February 8th 10-11am-  School Foundations Supporting Sustainability
March 8th 10-11am-  Creating School Policies that Support Sustainability
April 12th 10-11am-  Strategic Planning: Incorporating Green Initiatives
May 10th 10-11am- Education for Sustainability
April 6th 10-11am- Arts Ed Now Toolkit: Supporting Compliance with State Requirements
TRAINING OPPORTUNITIES WITH SUSTAINABLE JERSEY FOR SCHOOLS PARTNERS

JANUARY 21, 2017, 9:00AM- 3:00PM, Duke Farms, Hillsborough, NJ
The Eagle Cam is a wonderful tool for teaching about ecology, endangered species or animal adaptions. Enhance your understanding of the science behind NJ's bald eagle management program and discover the many ways this technology can be used in your classroom. Register for this $25/pp. training here.

JANUARY 19th & 20th 2017, Crowne Plaza Conference Center, Princeton, NJ
"From Inspiration to Impact: Inspiring stories. Compelling Evidence. Meaningful impact." 
ANJEE's 32nd annual conference will link powerful stories of innovation and success in EE from around the state with how environmental education builds community and creates purposeful change. We will celebrate the ways in which our work inspires people of all ages and backgrounds to connect with nature, contribute to healthy environments and empowered communities, and shape a more sustainable future. Register  here. 

JANUARY 31, 2017 4:30PM-6:00PM, Princeton, NJ (Middle School Teachers)
FEBRUARY 7, 2017 4:30PM-6:00PM, Princeton, NJ (High School Teachers)
OASIS (Organizing Action on Sustainability In Schools) and the Rutgers University Climate Institute are pleased to offer this free professional development training to help educators improve their understanding of climate science and develop effective teaching and learning practices to teach about climate science. Register for this free training here.

FEBRUARY 4, 2017, 9:00AM- 3:00PM, Duke Farms, Hillsborough, NJ
Teachers will explore the power of PBL as they spend the day working with other teachers at their grade level and will then leave with new tools including a problem-based task, analytic rubric, unit level scaffold, and tools for facilitation to implement a new bald eagle  unit in their classrooms. Register for this $30/pp. training here

SCHOOL INTEGRATED PEST MANAGEMENT TRAINING 2016-2016
NJ Association for Designated Persons, NJDEP, NJ School Buildings & Grounds Association
Throughout the state, every month beginning in November
See the complete schedule for dates & locations here.  
NORTH AMERICAN ASSOCIATION FOR ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION (NAAEE)
Topics include: Systems Thinking, Diversity & Inclusion in Environmental Education, Telling Your Story with Web Mapping Technology, and more! Visit the NAAEE page here.
NJ DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION, Podcast series (ongoing)
"Discover DEP" 

We hope you will join us to take steps to create a brighter future, one school at a time!  If you have questions, email us at schools@sustainablejersey.com or visit www.SustainableJerseySchools.com.

 

Sustainable Jersey for Schools

NAAEE: eeNEWS for January 11, 2017             (Posted: 1-13-17)

Click HERE.

January Littoral News             (Posted: 1-5-17)

Click HERE.

Raritan Headwaters Newsletter: Happy New Year!             (Posted: 1-5-17)

January 2017
Every Drop Counts
           
A big thank you to all who generously gave to our 2016 year-end appeal. RHA's goal is to raise $80,000 through this appeal for our water, education and advocacy programs, and we're getting close. But we're not there yet. If you haven't sent a gift, please consider donating today!
NEW! River-Friendly Workshops 
     
RHA has partnered with Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association and New Jersey Water Supply Authority to implement a suite of River-Friendly programs. Coming up: Design Your Own Rain Garden (Jan. 18, 25), Composting & Soil Health (Feb. 22), and Rainwater Harvesting (Mar. 22).
For more on the River-Friendly program, visit www.njriverfriendly.org.  
Don't Miss Our Next "Morning Call," January 19
 
RHA's Policy Director Bill Kibler will lead a discussion on "Elections have consequences: Environmental priorities in NJ 2017." Coffee and a complimentary breakfast will be available. Donations appreciated.
 

New Seminar Series for Decision-Makers
 
RHA is hosting the seminar series, Watershed Tools for Local Decision-Makers, in order to provide practical guidance on science, regulations, and funding sources that can be used to understand and protect local water resources. These seminars are for municipal leaders, employees and committee members.
 
The series kicks off January 26 with "Complying with New Jersey Stormwater Regulations," presented by Dr. Chris Obropta, Rutgers Coop Extension. Read more and register (space is limited)!

On the Prowl for Owls
 
Join us February 10, 4:30-6:30pm for an Owl Prowl with a presentation from the Raptor Trust followed by a guided hike with Alan Rennie under the full moon. This event is free, though donations are appreciated.
 

Chemical Monitoring Volunteers Needed
           
Winter stream monitoring will be conducted February 4-20. A number of sites deemed impaired for two consecutive years require additional monitoring, and we need volunteers! Interested? Contact Angela Gorczyca to learn more.
What Have We Learned about the State of Our Watershed?
 
It was standing room only at this year's State of Our Watershed conference held December 3 at the new Hoffmans Crossing campus in Califon.
 
Here are some facts and stats that were shared with conference attendees on the quality and quantity of water in our watershed and across the state.
On the Watchdog Front

On the last day of the legislative session for 2016, the New Jersey Assembly overwhelmingly passed ACR-192, a resolution to help protect drinking water sources in the Highlands. On behalf of RHA, Director of Policy Bill Kibler testified in favor of the resolution, which would block DEP's attempt to weaken existing nitrate standards. The resolution now goes to the Senate, where RHA will work for its swift passage.
  
Did You Know?

RHA's 2016 Stream Cleanup was recently given an American Rivers' National River Cleanup 25th Anniversary River Heroes Honorable Mention in the category of Most Volunteers Mobilized!
 
We are also proud to have received the 2016 Governor's Award for Environmental Excellence, along with partners Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association and New Jersey Water Supply Authority, for our River-Friendly program. This is the second consecutive year RHA has been honored with this award.
 
Events & Happenings

January 9, 16, 23, 30
Birding Walks at Fairview Farm with Naturalist Alan Rennie, 8am

January 18, 25 

February 10

March 2
Save the Date: RHA Member Meeting

Raritan Headwaters, a nonprofit conservation organization, protects clean water in the North Branch and South Branch regions of the Raritan River, serving the residents of 38 municipalities within Morris, Somerset, and Hunterdon Counties and beyond to include more than 1.5 million people who live and work in New Jersey's more urban areas.
The Nature Conservancy - Great Places: Sparks of Hope in 2016             (Posted: 1-5-17)

Click HERE.

Duke Farms: Community Garden Plots Available             (Posted: 1-5-17)

Click HERE.

D&R Greenway Land Trust: As we enter 2017, a look back on this year's accomplishments             (Posted: 1-5-17)

Click HERE.

Guest Blogs and Commentary from the New Nature Movement             (Posted: 1-5-17)

Click HERE.

NRPA report-survey results             (Posted: 1-5-17)

Click HERE.

Children & Nature Research Digest | December 2016             (Posted: 1-5-17)

Click HERE.

'Tis the Season for School Ambassador Fellows & Director's Award Nominations             (Posted: 1-5-17)

Apply and nominate today!
Green Strides Design

 

          U.S. Department of Education

   Green Strides

In this edition:

News

School Ambassador Fellowship Program montage

Join the U.S. Department of Education as a School Ambassador Fellow


The Department's 2017-2018 School Ambassador Fellowship application is open. This program is designed to broaden the agency’s Teaching Ambassador Fellowship and Principal Ambassador Fellowship programs to allow other professional school personnel -- like counselors, librarians, parent liaisons, and assistant principals -- to apply.  The goal is to create a cadre of outstanding educators to inform the work of the Department, while expanding their own knowledge and expertise as they participate in and help lead the national education dialogue.  As in previous years, applicants may choose to apply as Washington Fellows -- a full-time appointment where fellows are based in residence at the agency’s headquarters in Washington, D.C. -- or as Campus Fellows -- a part-time appointment where fellows collaborate with the agency while maintaining their regular school responsibilities in their home communities.  The application closes January 23.  >>>>

 GRSlogo

Last Chance to Enter ED-Green Ribbon Schools '17

Participating state education authorities have winter application deadlines for 2017 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools (ED-GRS), with nominations due to ED by Feb. 1.  Interested colleges and universities should contact state higher education authorities, while schools and districts should contact state education agencies.  Schools, districts, and postsecondary institutions are only eligible if nominated by state authorities.  Hearing from interested applicants may be helpful to those states considering participation in a future year.  State education authorities can find award criteria and other state implementation guidance on the ED website and should contact U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools for more information.  Now is also a good time for schools, districts, and postsecondary institutions to gear up for the 2018 application cycle by using resources and programs on Green Strides and to contact your state authority if it does not already make nominations.  Read some common misconceptions about the award dispelled in a blog by the director and review Frequently Asked Questions about the award. >>>>

Bernie Piaia 2016 Director's Award Recipient
Bernard E. Piaia Jr., Director of the Office of School Facilities at the New Jersey Department of Education,receives the 2016 Director's Award at a ceremony on July 20, 2016 in Washington, DC.

Director’s Award Nominations Due March 1st

The Director’s Award recognizes state education authorities’ exemplary efforts to administer U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools (ED-GRS).  Annually, the Director’s Award goes to the state education official who does the most to advance sustainable education in his or her state, by such means as running a robust nomination process; connecting more schools, districts, and postsecondary institutions to sustainability resources; amplifying the stories of honorees; helping schools, districts, and postsecondary institutions connect and learn from one another; partnering with a variety of state and non- and for-profit private sector entities; and exhibiting a dedication to exceptional school facilities, health, and environmental education through activities outside of the award.  If you wish to nominate an official from your state education agency, please send your nomination and justification to ed.green.ribbon.schools@ed.gov by March 1st.  Any state education agency official who is involved in implementing the ED-GRS award and who has not already won the Director’s Award is eligible for nomination.  Read about the past Director’s Award recipients. >>>>

Learn from the 2016 Honorees

Want to make some sustainable improvements on your school? Take inspiration from the 2016 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools, District Sustainability Awardees, and Postsecondary Sustainability Awardees and learn more about their work on Green Strides.

Fly fishing at Broadneck High School
The Broadneck physical education department is committed to engaging students in outdoors physical activity with courses such as Walking for Wellness and Lifetime Sports, the latter of which offers a unit in fly fishing during which students are able to visit a local waterway to practice.

Broadneck High School, Annapolis, Maryland

Since 1982, Broadneck High School (BHS) has been an environmentally-oriented institution with students and staff participating in civic-minded, bay-focused restoration projects.  Students have led efforts to plant bay grasses, design and implement rain gardens, and develop and plant stormwater restoration projects.  AP Environmental Science students conduct annual stream studies of a retention pond on school property over a 10-year time period.  All students are afforded the opportunity to engage in environmental literacy through signature overlays, a means of refocusing existing content so that it can be taught through the lens of the environment.  Students recognized the challenge of recycling, and collaborated with operations staff, custodial staff, and faculty to implement a successful schoolwide program.  The school engages in walking field trips to reduce transportation use and keep students active.  The Environmental Literacy Explorations course partnered with the Baltimore Gas and Electric company to develop a student-led energy audit.  In 2015, the school’s Green Team began an organic vegetable garden in the school’s courtyard.  At Broadneck and around Anne Arundel County Public Schools, students can take unlimited fruits and vegetables with their lunches.

Student setting up for solar car race in Alachua County Schools FL
An Alachua County Public Schools student sets up her vehicle at the Junior Solar Sprint Car Competition at the North Florida Energy Whiz Expo, where students demonstrate their STEM understanding as it pertains to renewable energies.

Alachua County Public Schools, Florida

Alachua County Public Schools (ACPS), where approximately 50 percent of students are eligible for free or reduced price lunch, was an EPA 2013 ENERGY STAR Leader and Top Performer District, achieving an average ENERGY STAR score of 77 across its schools.  ACPS has 21 school sites with more than two megawatts of photovoltaics installed.  Three of these projects were provided through partnerships with local utility providers, and are hands-on learning centers for students.  Eighteen sites are Feed-In-Tariff programs, which provide a substantial income to ACPS from the rental of roof spaces.  In addition, a portion of the solar rental income is earmarked toward funding the North Florida EnergyWhiz Expo event a forum for students to demonstrate their STEM knowledge and skills as they relate to such energy topics as solar thermal, photovoltaics, and hydrogen technology.  The event features a Junior Solar Sprint Car Competition and a Solar Energy Cook-Off.  In addition, the district has provided a solar energy kit in conjunction with a one-day workshop about solar energy to every school in the county, along with solar energy training for a teacher from each of the 42 schools.  ACPS' Camp Crystal Lake program sends all second grade students to a sixty acre "classroom without walls” to engage in environmental learning.  In fifth grade, all students attend overnight campouts onsite to further enhance their understanding of North Central Florida's ecosystems firsthand.  The district’s award-winning Food and Nutrition Services department has nearly two dozen farm-to-school programs underway. 

Chancellor Mone on Bublr Bikeshare
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Chancellor Mark Mone gives the campus' Bublr Bikeshare a whirl.

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Milwaukee, Wisconsin

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s (UWM) academic departments, such as the master’s degree program in Sustainable Peacebuilding—a graduate degree program that prepares students to work with communities on issues such as human development, resource stewardship, and conflict resolution—exemplify the interdisciplinary nature of a sustainable future.  Student Affairs delivers co-curricular environmental film festivals, energy competitions in the residence halls, and leadership in green office practices.  Facility Services has been a leader in energy conservation and chemical reductions. Extensive recycling programs, green cleaning, stormwater runoff reductions, and energy conservation have led to cost savings.  Performance contracting alone has saved UWM $11.9 million in avoided energy costs through fiscal 2015.  Academic research on stormwater management has been well aligned with the administrative rollout of multiple green roofs, green parking lots, and cistern stormwater catchment that are reducing the combined sewer overflow effect on Lake Michigan. Campus grounds include the 11.1-acre Downer Woods forest, native prairie plantings in stormwater gardens throughout campus, and natural lawn care.  UWM offers 190 sustainability-focused and related courses across 38 departments.  The majority of core STEM-identified departments offer such coursework.  The recent opening of the School of Freshwater Science and Joseph J. Zilber School of Public Health are both model examples of building a sustainable, healthy community.  UWM is also home to an interdisciplinary, sustainability-focused Global Studies program, the School of Architecture’s Institute for Ecological Design, the cross-institutional and community-oriented Institute for Urban Agriculture and Nutrition, as well as a breadth of sustainability curriculum across the art, sciences, and humanities.  The Outdoor Pursuits program, delivered through University Recreation, builds a unique program for the urban environment, and develops outdoor and lifestyle skills for a wide variety of students.   

Events

Green Schools Conference and Expo logo

The Green Schools National Conference & Expo is March 21-22 in Atlanta 

 The Green Schools Conference and Expo (GSCE) connects green school champions nationwide for two days of learning and collaboration to support the shared mission of equitable, healthy and high-performing schools, where students can learn how to sustain and improve the world around them.  Green Schools National Network members receive a discount on registration. Learn more about membership>>>>

Green Schools Alliance Logo

The Student Climate & Conservation Congress (Sc3) is June 25-July 1 in WV

The Sc3 is a week-long leadership training event for high school students held annually at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Conservation Training Center in West Virginia.  Students spend a week studying and discussing environmental, social, and economic interconnections to address climate change and conservation challenges affecting their generation – all while connecting with nature and new friends.  >>>>

Resources and Opportunities

EPA

Five Star and Urban Waters Restoration Grant Applications Due January 31

The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Five Star and Urban Waters Restoration grant focuses on the stewardship and restoration of coastal, wetland and riparian ecosystems across the country to meet the conservation needs of important species and habitats, providing measurable and meaningful conservation and educational outcomes. The program requires the establishment and/or enhancement of diverse partnerships and an education/outreach component that will help shape and sustain behavior to achieve conservation goals. >>>>

Captain Planet Logo

Captain Planet Foundation Small Grants Applications Due by Jan. 31

The Captain Planet Foundation is accepting the next round of applications for small grants totaling $500-$2500. Grant activities must be project-based, performed by youth, and have real environmental outcomes. >>>>

Bioenergize Me Logo

Register for Department of Energy’s BioenergizeME Challenge by Feb. 3

In the 2017 BioenergizeME Infographic Challenge, high school-aged teams use technology to research, interpret, apply, and design an infographic that responds to one of four cross-curricular bioenergy topics.  Register by February 3 to test your knowledge and creativity along with student teams across the country.  Submissions are due March 3, 2017. Selected infographics will be featured on the challenge website, and one team will be selected to present at the Bioenergy Technologies Office's conference in Washington, D.C. >>>>

EPA logo

President’s Environmental Youth Awards Applications are Due March 1 

The President’s Environmental Youth Awards promote awareness of our nation's natural resources and encourages positive community involvement. The program includes two components: a regional certificate of special recognition and a national award competition. All qualified applicants each year receive a certificate of recognition from their EPA regional office.  In addition, one outstanding project from each region is selected to receive a national award plaque. Projects are developed by young individuals, school classes (K-12), summer camps, and youth organizations to promote environmental stewardship.  >>>> 

Webinars

The Green Strides Webinar Series Continues 

The Green Strides Webinar Series promotes sessions that provide free tools to reduce schools' environmental impact and costs; improve health and wellness; and teach effective environmental education.  Consult the webinar calendar and submit suggestions of free webinars related to school, district, and postsecondary sustainability to ed.green.ribbon.schools@ed.gov for listing.

Green Strides Design

January 10, 2017, 4:00-5:30 p.m. Teachers Connect: NASA LaRC 100 (NASA)

January 18, 2017, 6:00-7:00 p.m. Deep Sea Science in the Classroom (NOAA)

January 26, 2017, 1:00-2:00 p.m. Energy Efficiency Plus Indoor Air Quality (EPA)

Happy holiday red and green lights

Connect with Green Strides

Green Strides: Resources for School Facilities, Health, and Environment
U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools
Facebook: @EDGreenRibbonSchools
Twitter: @EDGreenRibbon


If you received a forwarded newsletter, sign up to receive us directly next month.

Science Update: Saving Loons             (Posted: 12-23-16)

Click HERE.

SJ4S: Making Progress on Arts Actions             (Posted: 12-14-16)

SUSTAINABLE JERSEY FOR SCHOOLS
228 Districts     565 Schools     Participating
Resource Spotlight: Does your school have what it takes to earn 20 points in Sustainable Jersey for Schools Arts Actions?
 
Did you know that NJ Standards call for every School District in NJ to provide sequential learning of dance, theater, music and visual arts for K-12? 

Did you know that NJ has a new grade weighting law that requires schools to equally weigh arts classes with other academic subjects starting in the 2016/2017 school year? 

Sustainable Jersey for Schools encourages participation in the arts as an important component of sustainability education. Participating schools can earn up to 20 points by documenting Student Participation in the Arts and All Arts Disciplines Offered actions located in the Learning Environment category. Check out what Sustainable Jersey for Schools certified schools are doing in the field of arts education:
  • 2016 Silver Certified Elementary School, Cape May City Elementary received 10 points in the "Student Participation in the Arts" action category. Scroll down through their certification report to read their story and see their arts documentation here.  
  • All seven 2015 Bronze Certified schools in the Medford Township School district received 20 points for completing both the Student Participation in the Arts and the All Arts Disciplines Offered actions. Not only does each school earn 20 points, but the district proudly meets the NJ standards to provide dance, theater, music and visual arts for K-12 students using a highly qualified teacher.  See a summary of the Medford Township School district's arts offerings and action documentation here
If you are not sure if your school meets the NJ Standards or qualifies for points under the Sustainable Jersey for Schools arts actions, enter your school name into the Arts Ed Now search feature to see how your school stacks up. 
Reminder: PSEG Sponsored Sustainable Jersey for Schools Grant Applications due February 3, 2017
    
Visit the Sustainable Jersey for Schools Grants & Resources page to learn more about funding for registered schools to support action related sustainability initiatives. Grants are available at the $2,000 and $10,000 level. If your school has not received a $2,000 capacity building grant from Sustainable Jersey for Schools, we strongly suggest viewing the informational webinar and submitting an application for 2017. 

Application Deadline is February 3, 2017. Click here for more information. 
Welcome Newly Registered Schools & Districts!
Atlantic County
Estell Manor Elementary School

Bergen County
Midland Park School District
 
Camden County 
Bingham Elementary School (Runnemede)
Downing Elementary School (Rinnemede
Mary E. Volz Elementary School (Runnemede)
Winslow Township High School

Cape May County
Dennis Township School District
Essex County
Washington Elementary School (West Caldwell)

Morris County
Boonton High School
Kings Road Elementary School (Madison)
Torey J. Sabatini Elementary School (Madison)

Ocean County
Toms River Regional School District

Sussex County
High Point High School (Sussex)
NJ Agricultural Society Learning Through Gardening Grants
 
The NJ Agricultural Society Learning Through Gardening grant provides teachers with curriculum, training and materials for three raised beds so that they can use the school garden to teach their core curriculum, including math, social studies, language arts, and science. 

Learning Through Gardening grant is awarded to schools planning to launch a schoolwide gardening program during school hours. Grants are not awarded to schools that intend to use the garden solely for after-school or club activities. Grant recipients must assemble a garden management committee of teachers from various grade levels. Garden committees can also include administrators and other stakeholders such as custodians, cafeteria managers, and parents. Grant recipients must plan for the garden to be used by at least two grade levels during the first year, and show plans to expand the garden's use by additional grade levels in future years. Every application must be accompanied by a letter of support from the school principal.
 
Application deadline February 1. 2017
NJDEP Conserve Wildlife Matching Grant Program
 
With funding from the Conserve Wildlife License Plate renewal fund, the NJDEP Division of Fish and Wildlife's Endangered and Nongame Species Program (ENSP) offers small matching grants for projects that advance nongame wildlife conservation and education. Approved projects are funded on a single-year basis and must be located in New Jersey. Grants are awarded every other year. 
 
The total amount available through the Conserve Wildlife Matching Grant Program in 2017 is $39,000 The maximum request per proposal is $3,500 ($1,000 is the minimum). This is a 1:1 matching grant; therefore grant funds cannot exceed 50% of the total project cost. At least 25% of the grantee's share of project funding must be monetary, and the remainder may be from in-kind support.

Nonprofit 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) organizations are eligible to apply.  Partner with your School Foundation or a local environmental nonprofit to bring project funds to your school.  
 
Application deadline December 15, 2015. 
NJHI: Next Generation Community Leaders
Youth Engagement Grants
 

New Jersey Health Initiatives: Next Generation Community Leaders is intended to further the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's vision of building a Culture of Health by leveraging the strengths of youth to affect change in their communities. This program will support communities in preparing the next generation of civic and community leaders by providing them with the resources and technical assistance they need to focus the time, talent, and energy of youth and providing the youth with an opportunity to make meaningful change in their communities through summer employment on a self-designed, community-focused project. At the conclusion of this three-year initiative, successful grantees will have engaged teams of 10-15 youth in the following actions:
  • Developing Civic Engagement and Leadership Skills
  • Participating in Meaningful Summer Employment
  • Participating in Civic Engagement Opportunities
  • Actively Engaging in an Alumni Network 
Grants will total up to $200,000 per grantee over three years, beginning July 2017. Visit NJHI information page here.
 
Application Deadline: January 12, 2017
TRAINING OPPORTUNITIES WITH SUSTAINABLE JERSEY FOR SCHOOLS PARTNERS

DECEMBER 14, 2016, 4:00PM- 5:00PM, Free Webinar Series
Eco-Schools USA
*Please note that student led energy audits do not meet the criteria for the Sustainable Jersey for Schools Energy Audit action, but can serve as practical educational tools. Eco-Schools is an international program, hosted in the US by the National Wildlife Federation. 

JANUARY 20, 2017 9:30AM-3:30PM, Trenton, NJ
In the one-day sessions, participants will review a Sustainability Wellness Check, which will be in alignment with the Sustainable Jersey for Schools certification program. Board members will receive three board member academy credits for participation in this working session.Register for this free training here.

JANUARY 21, 2017, 9:00AM- 3:00PM, Duke Farms, Hillsborough, NJ
The Eagle Cam is a wonderful tool for teaching about ecology, endangered species or animal adaptions. Enhance your understanding of the science behind NJ's bald eagle management program and discover the many ways this technology can be used in your classroom. Register for this $25/pp. training here.

FEBRUARY 4, 2017, 9:00AM- 3:00PM, Duke Farms, Hillsborough, NJ
Teachers will explore the power of PBL as they spend the day working with other teachers at their grade level and will then leave with new tools including a problem-based task, analytic rubric, unit level scaffold, and tools for facilitation to implement a new bald eagle  unit in their classrooms. Register for this $30/pp. training here

SCHOOL INTEGRATED PEST MANAGEMENT TRAINING 2016-2016
NJ Association for Designated Persons, NJDEP, NJ School Buildings & Grounds Association
Throughout the state, every month beginning in November
See the complete schedule for dates & locations here.  
NORTH AMERICAN ASSOCIATION FOR ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION (NAAEE)
Topics include: Systems Thinking, Diversity & Inclusion in Environmental Education, Telling Your Story with Web Mapping Technology, and more! Visit the NAAEE page here.

NJ DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION, Podcast series (ongoing)
"Discover DEP" 

We hope you will join us to take steps to create a brighter future, one school at a time!  If you have questions, email us at schools@sustainablejersey.com or visit www.SustainableJerseySchools.com.

Sustainable Jersey for Schools
Sustainability Institute at the College of New Jersey
Forcina Hall, 3rd Floor
2000 Pennington Rd.
Ewing, NJ 08628-0718

CWFNJ: December E-News 2016             (Posted: 12-12-16)

A special thanks to all who made the 11th Annual Women & Wildlife Awards a success!
From left to right: CWF Executive Director, David Wheeler, renowned wildlife artist James Fiorentino, Education Honoree Tanya Sulikowski, Leadership Honoree Wendy Walsh, Inspiration Honoree Martha Maxwell-Doyle, and CWF Board of Trustees member Bob Coleman.
For the 11th year, Conserve Wildlife Foundation presented the Women & Wildlife Awards to three special individuals for their leadership on New Jersey's rare wildlife: Wendy Walsh, Martha Maxwell-Doyle and Tanya Sulikowski.

The festive night brought heartfelt tributes to these remarkable leaders, capped with Tanya's former students joining her on the stage. Former Governor James J. Florio captured the spirit of service and conservation in his own keynote remarks. 

This night could not have been a success without the generous donations from our sponsors and auction contributors, Duke Farms for hosting the event at the gorgeous Coach Barn, and our CWF Board of Trustees and staff. Most importantly, we thank the women dedicated to wildlife conservation who strive to make a difference every day.

From left to right: CWF Director of Development Liz Silvernail, Duke Farms Executive Director 
Michael Catania, and the Honorable Governor James J. Florio.

To learn more about this event contact Liz Silvernail, CWF Director of Development.

 
SECOND SEASON OF CRAB POT REMOVALS
CWF had our first day of crab pot retrievals last week! CWF is removing derelict crab pots that entrap unintentional bycatch in Barnegat Bay. We have partnered with local crabbers, Stockton University, MATES, ReClam the Bay and Monmouth University. This project is funded through NOAA's Marine Debris Removal program and we could not be more excited for our second field season! We pulled up three pots on the first day, one with a live Toadfish inside. Only 597 more to go to meet our goal for the season!

 
ON A QUEST TO RESIGHT PIPING PLOVERS
With time at a premium, CWF Biologist Todd Pover went on a survey blitz last weekend, crisscrossing the island of Abaco in the Bahama in search of piping plovers. The goal was to resight as many banded plovers as possible, in order to help the various researchers who originally tagged the birds determine their winter distribution, survival, and other life-cycle information. Each band resight is a valuable piece of data, but of course it is especially satisfying when you stumble on a bird from one of your own beaches. 

Meet "Taco", who was originally banded on his breeding grounds about 1000 miles away at the Edwin B. Forsythe NWR in New Jersey. A special thanks to Abaconian Keith Kemp for the photo and his tremendous help so far this fall in tracking down piping plover bands on Abaco.

GET YOUR CWF GEAR BEFORE FIELD SEASON!
 
We have NEW CWF hats available! 100% cotton. Moisture wicking sweat band. Adjustable strap on back. One size fits most. Available in Khaki, Burgundy and Blue.


 

FIRST BEES ADDED TO ENDANGERED SPECIES LIST  

The world is experiencing a decline in pollinators, New Jersey is no exception.
 



AUTUMN IN NEW JERSEY: WHY DO TREES SHED THEIR LEAVES?
 
To us this simply signals another changing season in New Jersey. But to these trees, it offers a tactic for survival.


Great Places: You Helped Save Their Home             (Posted: 12-12-16)

Click HERE.

Guest Blogs and Commentary from the New Nature Movement             (Posted: 12-12-16)

Click HERE.

December Littoral News             (Posted: 12-12-16)

Click HERE.

Archived WEB-LINKS are available upon request throught the webmaster.