Nathan Bishop Middle School and Classical High School among 78 schools honored nationally
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
The same week he announced a $19 million increase in funding for public education, Mayor Angel Taveras applauded two Providence public schools honored by the Obama Administration as "Green Ribbon Schools."
The new designation was created to honor schools that take a comprehensive approach to reduce environmental impact, promote health and ensure a high-quality environmental and outdoor education that prepares students with the skills to compete.
"The greatest economic development investment we can make is an investment in our children. I believe in our students and am committed to improving education in every part of the city. I am proud that Providence is home to two of the nation's first Green Ribbon schools and hope other schools across Providence and Rhode Island follow the model set by Nathan Bishop Middle School and Classical High School," said Mayor Angel Taveras, a graduate of Classical High School. "This is the future of how we need to think about school buildings - bright, vibrant, healthy learning environments for our children that have a minimal eco-footprint on our community."
Nathan Bishop Middle School, which was completely renovated and re-opened in September 2009, and Classical High School, which underwent an extensive renovation to its science wing in 2011, were among just 78 schools nationwide, from 26 states and the District of Columbia, to earn this distinction.
Rhode Island Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education Deborah A. Gist had nominated these two Providence schools, along with the Providence Career and Technical Academy, for national consideration.
"I congratulate the Providence Public Schools on the selection of Classical High School and the Nathan Bishop Middle School as two of the first-ever U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools," said Gist. "Green Ribbon Schools are high-quality learning environments and they save taxpayer dollars - through economies during construction and through long-term savings on energy and utility costs. Green Ribbon Schools such as Classical and Nathan Bishop can also serve as models for student explorations in science, ecology, engineering, and other career and technical fields. Rhode Island has been a leader in the green-school movement, and we're proud that, among the 78 Green Ribbon Schools in the country, two are from our state."
"The extensive planning and long-range view that went into both these building projects are exemplars," said Interim Providence Schools Superintendent Dr. Susan Lusi. "And the continuing 'green' usage of these buildings to model best environmental practices for students, staff and the community is an important learning tool for all - these top-notch settings inspire thought and care for how they benefit not just the students there now, but students for years to come who will benefit from these spaces.
On Monday night, Mayor Taveras presented the Fiscal Year 2013 budget to the City Council which includes a nearly $20 million increase for public education due to increased state aid and an acceleration of state support for education under consideration in the General Assembly.