There are several quality healthy school programs with toolkits for families, educators, and administrators to implement that make a difference in our children’s health and education. These are our favorite science-based and proven effective healthy school program recommendations:
Grassroots Environmental Education: The childsafe School
Provides a step-by-step framework to help parents, teachers and administrators make their schools as environmentally safe as they can be, by adopting policies that prohibit the idling of school buses and other vehicles, mandate the use of safe cleaning products, and eliminate the use of pesticides on school grounds and playing fields. What we love about this program is that it addresses wireless technology, advocates for organic pest management, and provides advocacy guides for families.
Center for Health, environment and Justice: The green flag program
A project of the national Child Proofing Our Communities Campaign. The program’s goal is to help communities make schools healthier while educating students about environmental issues. They offer a flexible three-step program with templates for environmental surveys, outreach letters to families, flyers and posters to help advance your school’s environmental behaviors. What we love about this program is the way it provides celebratory benchmarks along the way and recognition with the Green Flag of Environmental Leadership.
Children’s Environmental Health Network’s Eco-Healthy Child Care Program
A national program that partners with child care professionals to eliminate or reduce environmental health hazards found within or around child care facilities. They have a checklist that provides 30 easy-to-follow steps to reduce environmental health hazards in your child care facility. They address safe drinking water, waste reduction, and non-toxic playground equipment, classroom supplies, cleaning, pest and chemical management. They also offer STEM educational components. Child care providers who comply with 24 of these steps can become EHCC endorsed.
Sonoma County CONSERVATION ACTION’S TOXIC FREE FUTURE CAMPAIGN
Sonoma County Conservation Action’s Toxic Free Future Campaign is working to eliminate synthetic herbicides from public spaces and schools throughout Sonoma County. We collaborate with SCCA’s Toxic Free Future Campaign and successfully partnered with Santa Rosa City School District to design and implement a least-toxic pest management plan that eliminates the use of synthetic pesticides on all 25 school campuses. They developed a Toolkit: Toxic Free Future Tools Training for community members who want to engage in inquiry, advocacy, and policy change.
Parents for a Safer Environment
Bay Area leaders in the effort to eliminate the use of unnecessary pesticides in Contra Costa County and reduce environmental toxic exposures to protect our children, wildlife, and the environment. They engage in and provide templates for requesting public records, ensuring schools and municipalities toxic usages and practices are transparent and accountable, engaging stakeholders, training municipalities, communities, schools, and the private sector on best practices in non-toxic pest management.
MOms across america
Moms Across America is a national coalition of moms whose motto is “Empowered Moms, Healthy Kids.” Their mission is to raise awareness about toxics exposure, empower leadership, and create healthy communities. They educate and inspire mothers and others to transform the food industry and environment. They support local activities, initiate campaigns and share solutions nationwide to improve our health and freedoms through the Toxin Free Town Campaign.