Hathaway Brown’s Center for Sustainability engages the HB community with the principles and practices of sustainability, providing a foundation in theory and opportunities for action. Taking a “full spectrum” approach to sustainability, the Center’s focus reaches beyond “being green” to address the complex, systemic relationships between social equity, economic security, environmental integrity and human-wellness. The Center for Sustainability also works across the school to address the school’s own facilities, operations, and institutional culture and practices.
Sustainability Planning at HB
Central to the Center’s work this year is the development of a sustainability plan for the school’s facilities and operations, building off of last year's work completing the greenhouse gas inventory and water use audit for the 2004-2005 through 2010-2011 fiscal years. In addition to updating the GHG inventory with the 2011-2012 data, we will engage in a planning process to identify opportunities for improvement and prioritize possible projects.
In addition to the formal planning work, the Center for Sustainability has three target action areas for campus operations for the 2012-2013 school year:
- solid waste reduction
- elimination/minimization of exposure to environmental toxins
- reduced energy use through behavioral changes
HB Community Garden
Last summer HB created a small community garden, organized and tended by a team of Upper School students. The Upper School Garden Representatives are working to involve students from all divisions in the garden. Food from the garden will be used for snacks in one of our Early Childhood classrooms this fall.
HB families have the opportunity to help tend the garden over the summer. In return for their help, they can take home any produce that is ready to harvest during their week of service. Sign up to here help tend the garden for a week over the summer. Summer volunteers will receive a reminder email with instructions a few days before their week of service.
Seminar and Speaker Series
As part of the Institute for 21st Century Education's speaker series, the CfS will be hosting several lunchtime seminars and speakers series throughout the year. These speakers all bring solutions to the table and help people understand the connections between economics, the environment, social equity and human wellness.
The Lorax is HB's environmental club for Upper School students. Joyce Guo ’13 is the current club president.
The club encourages students and faculty to consider the environmental impacts of their daily decisions. In the ’11-’12 school year, the club sponsored activities including morning meeting slides with tips for green living, making folded paper holiday ornaments using old magazines and catalogues, and a series of challenges during Earth Week in April (e.g. if 50 students commit to using re-usable mugs when they go out for coffee or tea for a week, Mr. Vogel will use a re-usable mug for his daily coffee for the rest of the year. Of course, the real question is why Mr. Vogel isn’t already using a re-useable mug every day!)
Students may engage in sustainability-related independent projects or internships through the W.E.S.T. Program in the Middle School or the Strnad, SREP or Senior Project programs in the Upper School. CfS helps to support these projects.
HB’s curriculum addresses sustainability themes in many places. CfS supports this through guest lectures and activities in classes in all divisions, teacher support for curriculum development, and course selection assistance to students interested in in-depth study of sustainability.
Squire Valleevue Farm
HB recently established a partnership with Case Western Reserve University’s Squire Valleevue Farm located on 398 acres in Hunting Valley. This relationship will enable students to engage in hands on ecological investigation both in the lab and in the field.