Harford County’s C. Milton Wright High School recently received national recognition for environmental leadership. The school was the recipient of the International Eco-Schools Award, the highest award for a green school. C. Milton Wright is one of only 16 high schools in the country to receive this distinction administered by the National Wildlife Federation (NWF). A representative from NWF presented the coveted Eco-Schools flag to C. Milton Wright Environmental Science Teacher Mrs. Linn Griffiths and her class.
“We hung the flag proudly next to the Maryland Green School flag in our lobby,” said Mrs. Griffiths.
The Eco-Schools program was started in 1994 by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) with support by the European Commission. In 2003, it was identified by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) as a model initiative for Education for Sustainable Development. Currently, there are over 59 countries around the world participating in the program. Eco-Schools is an internationally acclaimed program that provides a framework to help educators integrate sustainability principles throughout their schools and curriculum.
The Eco-Schools program strives to model environmentally sound practices, provide support for greening the curriculum and enhance science and academic achievement. Additionally, it works to foster a greater sense of environmental stewardship among youth. The EcoSchools program is an ongoing program where projects and data are kept on the EcoSchools’ website and can be continually renewed. The school will track their energy and water consumption along with their trash and recycling rates to determine their carbon footprint.
C. Milton Wright has a proud history of environmental programs and projects that have earned a Maryland Green School rating.
“We are proud of our students and staff for creating an environmentally sustainable school culture and campus,” said Mr. Michael Thatcher, the school’s principal. “Mrs. Griffiths has been leading the charge with several school grounds projects.”
Recently, in partnership with the Harford Forest Conservancy, Mrs. Griffiths’ class participated in planting a grove of chestnut trees on the school grounds. The school system’s Resource Conservation Manager Andrew Cassilly works with all of the schools to provide them with building usage data.
“Giving the schools their energy usage allows the teachers to incorporate relevant examples into student lessons,” said Cassilly. Conservation efforts at C. Milton Wright have resulted in an 8% reduction in electrical usage from last year. C Milton Wright was one of four Harford County schools to be recognized for environmental leadership at the Student Environmental Summit held at Sandy Point Park this past spring.