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Peaks Teacher Leader To Discuss Green Schools, Sustainability

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Peaks Teacher Leader To Discuss Green Schools, Sustainability
Posted on 10/04/2016
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On Wednesday, Oct. 5, Peaks Island Elementary School Teacher Leader Renee Bourgoine-Serio will be a guest on a live call-in Maine Public radio show called Maine Calling, talking about food recovery and sustainability at the Peaks school and districtwide.

The show airs live at 1 p.m. on 90.1 FM and is repeated at 8 p.m. It will also be available online at any time on Maine Public’s website, mainepublic.org.

Bourgoine-Serio will be talking about Peaks' work around food recovery and becoming a Green School and then will talk more generally about other Portland Public Schools’ food recovery and sustainability efforts.

The Portland Board of Public Education formally adopted a Sustainability Policy in October 2012. It directed the Portland Public Schools to embrace sustainability practices to enhance student learning; use resources efficiently; reduce waste; consider environmental, societal and financial implications in decision making; and encourage activities that reduce pollution.

However, sustainability efforts in the district were well underway even before then. For example, the district had already invested in two energy performance contracts in 1999 and 2010; embraced single stream recycling in 2007; and launched its cafeteria food waste separation program in 2011.

The Portland Public Schools continues a number of sustainable practices, including:

-monitoring and conserving energy to reduce heating, electricity and water costs

-installing solar panels, green roofs and bio-retention beds at some schools

-expanding school gardens and buy-local programs

-encouraging alternative modes of travel to work and school including the Walking School Bus program

-investing in fuel-efficient buses

-being proactive in addressing indoor air quality concerns

-adopting more environmentally friendly cleaning practices

- sustaining the district’s cafeteria food waste separation/composting program

-transitioning from Styrofoam to compostable and now washable lunch trays

-focusing on healthy choices and good nutrition in the district’s school meal programs