On Thursday September 9, 2021 the Board of Education held a public hearing on the Draft 2023-2028 Capital Improvement Plan (CIP).  We provided testimony on the need for all buildings, including those that use Alternative Construction Financing (ACF), need to be LEED Gold and use geothermal heating.  A good number of members of the public also stressed the need for efficiency, healthy, green schools.  It was great public testimony and keep telling PGCPS we need 100% Clean Energy Schools.  You can also watch our testimony.

 

Read the Full Testimony

 

At the PGCPS Board of Education Meeting on July 28 we provided the following testimony thanking the Board for their support of the work of the Climate Change Action Plan Focus Workgroup.

Chair Miller, Vice-chair Williams, and members of the Board I would like to thank you for this opportunity to address you this evening as the lead volunteer of Climate Parents of Prince George’s. 

I would like to thank you for extending the time frame for completion of the Climate Change Focus Workgroup and for adding these three students to the Workgroup. 

The Workgroup has been a huge success to date. In our fact finding we have learned of the importance of addressing equity and diversity in a final climate action plan and approaches for doing so. We have learned of how state and county legislation impacts climate planning for our schools and how we can affect it. We learned how to impact education of the climate in our curriculum. We also heard from the students directly, the students that need us to be successful. Next we will learn of how our climate plan will address staff and others in the unions. 

While we had hoped to complete this work in time for FY22 that unfortunately was too quick.  We do need to integrate our understanding of larger issues with the technological solutions available and the data that represents our school systems buildings, buses, grounds, and meals. We also needed the new group of students to participate since Asia and Nanette, whom have given amazing and thoughtful effort, are moving on to the next stage in their lives. We are thankful that you allowed the workgroup the necessary time, added the new student members, and are glad to see this strong leadership from the Board. 

 

 

In case you missed it, on June 23, the PGCPS Climate Change Action Plan Focus Workgroup held its third meeting, this one on the topic of Environmental Justice and Equity.  We heard a great discussion from the panelists Abel Olivo of Defensores de la Cuenca, Staci Hartwell of NAACP Prince George’s County Branch, Emily Frias of CCAN, Maryland State Senator Clarence Lam, and Jan-Michael Archer of CEEJH.

 

We are excited that the Prince George’s County Public School Board of Education voted unanimously to adopt the Climate Change Action Plan Resolution committing to phase out fossil fuels from and go zero waste in PGCPS and to implement a Focus Workgroup to develop the Climate Change Action Plan. 

Thanks so much to Board Members Boozer-Stother and Jackson for introducing the resolution and for all of the help along the way from the Sierra Club Prince George’s County Group, Greenbelt Climate Action Network, Eleanor Roosevelt High School Sunrise Hub, Eleanor Roosevelt High School Environmental Defense Club, and Kenmoor Middle Global Squabblers.

“With this resolution Prince George’s County Public Schools has shown it is both a state and national leader in regards to fostering a healthier learning environment using the clean energy technologies of the future. We are very excited to be a partner in the development of a successful action plan and believe this will jump start efforts to do our part to ensure a healthier planet and learning environment for the children.”

PGCPS Clean Energy and Focus Workgroup Resolution Press Release

The testimony we gave in favor of HB 630, Primary and Secondary Education – School District Energy Use – Policy and Study, was well received and the message was noted by in Maryland Matters.  ‘“What does not get measured does not get managed,” Joseph Jakuta of the group Climate Parents Prince George’s told committee members.’  Please contact your Delegate to say you support HB 630.

You can read the full article here: https://www.marylandmatters.org/2021/02/18/to-address-climate-change-schools-encouraged-to-go-green/