For Immediate Release: August 29, 2007
Media Contact: Communication Office
Vermont Department of Health
MONTPELIER – Replacing carpet with tile, eliminating area rugs, repairing leaking pipes, repairing a roof and cleaning a boiler room are some of the reasons all five schools in the South Burlington School District will receive Envision Program Awards on Thursday from Gov. Jim Douglas.
A total of 13 schools, including the state’s only four-time Envision Program Award recipient – Lowell Graded School - will be recognized on Thursday, August 30, 10:30 a.m. at a Statehouse Ceremony (Cedar Creek Room) in Montpelier.
The Envision Program, run by the Vermont Department of Health, provides technical assistance and awards grants to schools to develop a model environmental health plan and policy.
The Vermont legislature established Vermont’s Environmental Health Act in 2000, and the legislation set in motion a proactive effort to sustain good indoor air quality and reduce environmental hazards in Vermont’s schools.
Lowell Graded School’s repeat accomplishment is part of a broad focus to provide students and faculty with the best possible environment to learn and grow.
“A healthy school environment is part of an overall effort by the entire school system in regards to health, nutrition and education,” said Steve Mason, chairman of the Lowell Graded School Schoolboard. “For example the kids and teachers planted a large garden between the school and the road and the kids bring home and prepare the food.”
Hinesburg Community School will receive the award this year despite closing temporarily in 2004 due to a mold problem. Staff from the school attended an environmental health workshop, formed an environmental health committee and completely modified how the school was maintained and cleaned.
Representatives from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Vermont Department of Health, the Department of Education and the Department of Buildings & General Services will participate in the awards.
The complete list of recipients of the Envision Program Awards are:
· Berkshire Elementary School
· Braintree Elementary School
· Hinesburg Community School
· Lowell Graded School
· Troy Elementary School
· Montpelier High School
· Montgomery Elementary School
· Robinson Elementary School
· Chamberlain Elementary School
· Orchard Elementary School
· South Burlington Central School
· Fred Tuttle Middle School
· South Burlington High School
Vermont State House School Environmental Health Awards
August 30, 2007, 10:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. - Cedar Creek Room
· Welcome and opening remarks
· Envision Program criteria and the role of the schools – Christine Finley, Deputy Commissioner Vermont Department of Health.
· EPA Indoor Air Quality Efforts -Eugene Benoit, EPA, Region I
· Common Facility Improvements that Improve Indoor Air Quality - Gerry Myers, Commissioner Department of Buildings & General Services
· Healthier Students Perform Better – Brian O’Regan, Deputy Commissioner, Department of Education
· Awards and Remarks - Governor James H. Douglas