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KPPC/U.S. EPA Co-host Healthy Schools Workshop

KPPC and U.S. EPA Office of Children's Health Protection workshop links environmental sustainability and healthy classrooms

KPPC/U.S. EPA Co-host Healthy Schools Workshop

KPPC Executive Director Cam Metcalf (right) and Wayne Garfinkel of the U.S. EPA Region 4 Office of Children's Health Protection.

Reduced operating costs, lower greenhouse gas emissions and improved energy performance are not the only benefits to best energy/environmental management practices in Kentucky's schools.

On May 24, 2011, KPPC, in partnership with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 4 Office of Children's Health Protection, co-hosted a Healthy Schools Workshop at Union College in Barbourville, Kentucky. Representatives from both organizations presented information about how these practices address a critical need for the schools' most precious commodity - the health and well-being of the students. Thirty-one people from state and federal agencies, KPPC partner organizations and Kentucky school districts attended the workshop. Topics focused on how to identify best energy and water efficiency opportunities; reuse, recycling and e-cycling of solid and universal waste; best practices for handling toxics; integrated pest management; and improving indoor air quality to reduce the risks of asthma and other illnesses.

An overview of the services offered by KPPC and the EPA's Children's Health and Schools Program were presented as well as a testimonial from Bell County Public Schools Superintendent George Thompson.

"What we're doing in Bell County can happen anywhere," said Thompson. "Our district's cross-functional energy team plays a critical role in helping us address energy and waste concerns. But everyone in the district needs to be involved in this cultural change toward responsible energy use and environmental management. The positive impact of this change can move beyond the classroom, to our students' homes and out into the community. Making the best use of resources like this workshop offered by KPPC and the EPA helps us provide a healthy and productive learning environment for our students."

Workshop attendees were pleased with the information they received. Evaluation forms submitted by attendees showed consistent high marks given for quality and usefulness of the presented materials and the desire to see similar workshops offered in the near future.

Copies of the Healthy Schools Workshop presentations are available upon request. Information about grant opportunities for schools to support environmental programs is available on this website. More pictures from the workshop are available on KPPC's Flickr site.

Following are links to information and resources related to the benefits of a clean educational environment.

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