Paramount Brookside provides a powerful working example of green initiatives in the educational setting. Green practices reduce the carbon footprint of the school every day that the school is in operation. The following features outline many of Paramount Brookside’s green efforts:
The onsite wind farm directly offsets electrical expenses.
Recycled carpet squares keep acoustics low while keeping all major surfaces green.
White roofing, and naturally heated glass-front keep the building energy efficient.
A comprehensive recycling program through Work Force Inc. allows the school to recycle 80 percent of school waste.
Students compost food from school lunches and this compost is used to feed the yearly school garden.
All bathrooms utilize paperless hand dryers and timed faucets.
Every light switch and outlet has a green face plate to constantly remind students of the school’s green initiative.
The school outdoor green space includes an orchard, fruit bushes, ½ mile fitness trail, outdoor classroom, apiary, goat and chicken farm, and school garden.
The farm is in peak production during the summer and so are the STEAM participants. This is a summer mentoring program that allows chosen students to continue to connect to the natural world, even when school is not in session. Participants take on various tasks around the farm, with the majority of the focus on our food garden. The ability for students to sow seeds, nurture their plants to maturity, and harvest food for sale at our on-site market is an invaluable lesson in patience and cause and effect. This experience gives students a better understanding of where food comes from along with a respect for the hard work involved in sustainable food production. It also provides a wonderful opportunity for learning how pollination works and how ecosystems are dependent on one another.
Any student is welcome to join this after-school program that promotes healthy living and environmental stewardship. The environmental education team works to encourage students to take initiative and be actively involved in their community. Students learn how to care for our fruit tree orchard, berry patch, or work with other ongoing projects around the farm. Various activities and games are used to get students moving, and young people develop the know how to function as a member of a team.