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Home » Educator Support » Awards & Recognition » School Awards » Green Ribbon Schools

Green Ribbon Schools

US Department of Education 2020 Green Ribbon School Honoree:

The U.S. Department of Education's Green Ribbon Schools Program celebrates schools and districts making significant progress towards:

  • Pillar 1: Reducing environmental impact and costs.
  • Pillar 2: Improving the health and wellness of schools, students, and staff.
  • Pillar 3: Providing effective environmental and sustainability education, incorporating STEM, civic skills, and green career pathways.

Selection Process

Schools and districts complete an online application. A state committee scores completed applications. The state may nominate up to five schools or districts. Public and private schools are eligible to apply. The state committee also selects schools and districts that excel in one or more of the pillars as Washington State Green School and District leaders.

Schools can answer the application with data and information based on the 2017-2020 school years - information is not required to be from facilities for the 2020-2021/ 2021-2022 school year. In fact, most schools and districts that receive the award do so by demonstrating systemic and sustained practices. We do not want remote learning and closed school facilities to be a barrier to your application. Please contact us with any questions about accommodations due to the pandemic.

For more information, please contact Washington's program coordinator Elizabeth Schmitz.

OSPI forwards state finalists to the U.S. Department of Education (ED). ED chooses national award recipients from this group.

2021-2022 Applications

Applications are due January 10, 2022!

Washington applications are open for the U.S. Department of Education’s Green Ribbon Schools (GRS) Recognition Program. For more information, or technical assistance please contact Washington's program coordinator Elizabeth Schmitz or the Science and Environmental & Sustainability Education administrative assistant Sabrina Reynolds

Frequently Asked Questions

Public, private schools and public districts are eligible.

State finalists and national award recipients may attend several statewide events, will receive an award, and join a state team of green leaders. ED invites national award recipients to a ceremony in Washington DC.

The Green Ribbon Schools program is ambitious. You should apply if you meet some benchmarks and are making significant progress towards meeting others. There are two levels of awards: the National Green Ribbon Schools Award program and the state Green Leader awards. If you do not meet all the benchmarks for the Green Ribbon Schools award, you may still be eligible for the Washington State Green Leader award.

Green Ribbon Schools, Districts, & Green Leaders

The 2015 US ED Green Ribbon Schools Awardee, Discovery Elementary, conducted a Facilitating Lasting Changes at an Elementary School study and outlined their path to minimizing waste in their school.

Bethel School District students demonstrating recycling program process

For more information, please contact Washington's program coordinator Elizabeth Schmitz.

Green Ribbon Schools Local Sponsor

Green Ribbon School Local Sponsor - California Casualty logo

Green Ribbon Schools Partners

E3 Washington State Association for Environmental and Sustainability educators     United State Environmental Protection Agency logo          King County Green Schools logo

Pacific Education Institute. Non profit science center logo     Washington Green Schools logo     Eco-Schools USA National Wildlife Federation logo