High-Performance School Buildings Program
State-funded school construction projects, greater than 5,000 square feet, are required by Chapter 39.35 RCW - High Performance Public Buildings to incorporate high-performance features into their school design and construction. School districts can use either Washington Sustainable Schools Protocol (WSSP) or LEED for Building Design and Construction (Schools). WSSP is modeled after the Collaborative for High Performance Schools (CHPS) green building protocol and adapted to reflect characteristics that optimize high performance in Washington schools. WSSP is a self-certifying standard developed to help school districts comply with the goals of the law. It is a planning tool that allows designers to plan a high-performance school while considering the regional, district, and site-specific possibilities and constraints for each project. The categories in the protocol include those related to Site, Water, Materials and Waste, Energy, Indoor Environmental Quality, Integration, Education and Operations.
Washington Sustainable Schools Protocol (WSSP)
WSSP is the green building guide for new and modernization school construction in Washington. Credits, in six major environmental categories, include those that are required and earn no points, as well as optional point-earning credits. The guide includes links to code standards, examples of credit compliance calculations, the WSSP submittals embedded in the D-Form process, and annual reporting requirements.
Projects receiving state capital funds through the School Construction Assistance Program (SCAP) will apply the version of WSSP in effect at the time the D4 approval is issued. Projects receiving state capital funds through a direct appropriation or through another grant program will apply the version of WSSP in effect at the time of budget appropriation.
The Washington Sustainable Schools Protocol has been updated for 2023. The WSSP has been updated to reflect changes to legislation, building and electrical codes, and updates to other sustainable building protocols. For a copy of the 2023 WSSP, email Shellie Neuman.
For questions regarding previous WSSP editions, email Morgan Powell.
Credit Interpretation Library
Starting June 1, 2014, OSPI is publishing credit interpretations. The library list will include the background, the request, and the interpretation in WSSP category and credit order. It will be updated every quarter (September, December, March, and June).
All schools will use Energy Star Portfolio Manager (ESPM) to report energy and water use for the 5 years of annual performance reporting. This change starts with the reports due in March 2019. Schools currently in the reporting phase will change from the WSSP Annual Reporting Workbook to ESPM. This change deletes the O & M observation section of the annual report.
The EPA created Energy Star Portfolio Manager to give building owners a tool to measure and track energy, water, and waste consumption, as well as greenhouse gas emissions. It is a free, online tool used by a growing number of commercial building owners to benchmark their buildings. Using ESPM is easy if you follow the step-by-step instructions in the Benchmarking starter kit for Portfolio Manager.
ESPM properties must be "shared" with OSPI School Facilities and Organization (SFO). The share is initiated by sending a "connect" request to SFO once the property has been built and the initial energy and water use have been recorded. Property energy and water use are required to be updated at a minimum of once every year in March, but preferably every quarter.
For questions regarding annual reporting email Morgan Powell.