US-ED Green Ribbon Schools Program

U.S. - ED Green Ribbon Schools Program


The National Green Ribbon Schools Recognition Awards

At the beginning of the 2011-2012 school year, the U.S. Department of Education (ED) launched the Green Ribbon Schools initiative which recognizes schools that have demonstrated exemplary achievement in all three Pillars and every element. This recognition award is part of a larger U.S. ED effort to identify and disseminate knowledge about practices proven to result in improved student engagement, academic achievement, graduation rates and workforce preparedness. It is also a government-wide effort aimed to increase energy independence and economic security.

Green Ribbon Schools Pillars and Elements

1. Environmental Impact and Energy Efficiency: Reduced or eliminated greenhouse gas emissions; Improved water quality, efficiency, and conservation; Reduced solid and hazardous waste production; Expanded use of alternative transportation.

2. Healthy School Environments: An integrated school environmental health program; High standards of nutrition, fitness, and quantity of quality outdoor time [ 3 ] for both students and staff.

3. Environmental and Sustainability Education: Interdisciplinary learning: environmental, energy and human systems; STEM content; Development of civic engagement in the community.

The 2017 GRS Awardees

In 2017, one Florida school district and four Florida schools were among the national awardees! In total, across the country 45 schools and 9 districts were honored for their innovative efforts to reduce environmental impact and utility costs, improve health and wellness, and ensure effective sustainability education.

We congratulate:

  • Air Base K-8 Center, Homestead, Fla.
  • Wilton Manors Elementary School, Wilton Manors, Fla.
  • Surfside Elementary School, Satellite Beach, Fla.
  • Castle Creek Elementary School, Orlando, Fla.
  • Duval County Public Schools, Jacksonville, Florida

Find out more about the honorees here: Honorees at a Glance 

If you have questions, please contact:

Penny Taylor
Director, Healthy Schools
325 West Gaines Street, Suite 444
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0400
Phone: 850-245-9522 – Email:

PJ Duncan
Secondary Science Specialist
Bureau of Standards and Instructional Support
325 W. Gaines Street, Suite 424
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0400
Phone: 850-245-0808 – Email:

Don S. Whitehead, AIA
Safe and Efficient Facilities Design Manager, Office of Educational Facilities
325 West Gaines Street, Suite 1054
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0400
Phone: 850-245-9295 – Email:


Green Ribbon Schools Timeline:

  • School Application submissions to Florida Department of Education were due by December 02, 2016
  • Florida Department of Education nominee submissions were due by February 01, 2017
  • U.S Department of Education selection of nominees were announced on April 24th, 2017
  • Award ceremony will be held on July 19th, 2017 in D.C.


Learn more about the Green Ribbon Schools Award.