K -1 2 Newsletter
New York State Pollution Prevention Institute
The New York State Pollution Prevention Institute (NYSP2I) encourages students and educators to implement, expand, and support environmental programs in New York State schools. NYSP2I connects schools and educators with regional experts that are able to present a wide range of pollution prevention and environmental science curriculums.

Through the Community Grants Program (CGP), NYSP2I provides funding to pollution prevention initiatives that educate communities. Many NYSP2I awardees are school programs or K-12 education-based organizations. NYSP2I encourages schools to utilize the curriculums and resources that NYSP2I's CGP partners have developed. 

Technical support is now available for NYS School Districts
Starting Fall of 2017, NYSP2I will work with school districts to help reduce environmental impacts and associated costs. Areas of focus will include waste, water and purchasing decisions.

Table of Contents
  1. Educational Programs
  2. Environmental Health
The Classroom Energy Challenge (CEC) is a  flexible, six-unit program developed by the Central New York Regional Planning and Development Board (CNYRPDB) for 5th and 6th grade enrichment classes t o improve energy awareness and energy literacy  through a variety of energy related challenges. CEC integrates science, math, and language arts instruction and provides learning experiences that correspond to state and national learning standards. KiloWatch involves middle school students, faculty, and staff in an energy management approach specifically for school buildings. Students are trained to use specialized equipment that allows them to monitor  energy use throughout their schools and learn about technologies and practices that save energy by conducting experiments and energy audits. In 2015, CNYRPDB implemented the CEC pilot at two schools in the Syracuse City School District. CNYRPDB received 2017 CGP funding to expand the CEC program to seven schools.  

"Over 275 teachers, students, and their families have learned about energy sustainability and conservation measures...There was a 6.5% energy savings documented during the project for participating schools and homes (a 31,153 kWh reduction) and a 30% improvement in student knowledge of energy issues."
- Chris Carrick, Planning & Development Board

Delta Environmental's Scholastic Aquatic Partnership is a hands-on environmental science program for 8th grade students from Rochester, NY. Students from Our Lady of Mercy School and the Young Women's College Prep witnessed the impact of pollution on the health of local waterways, analyzed,  collected, and reported their data, as well as presented their findings to local community leaders. This project supports young women interested in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) fields by demonstrating the role of science in protecting urban and suburban communities and pollution prevention education through hands-on water quality testing activities. Delta Environmental has also created other hands-on, K-12 curricula for learning about water resources and quality.

"The New York State Pollution Prevention Institute's Community Grant Program made it possible for us to fully support two local schools in their effort to expand STEM offerings. Our Scholastic Aquatic Partnership was highly successful in that the students involved gained invaluable hands- on learning about their local natural environment, and actively problem-solved how to prevent pollution."  - Karen Kessler,Board President

Photo Credit: Delta Environmental

"Our water right now isn't very clean. Pollution in the air and water is  bad for animals. We need cleaner water. I like it  (the program), because I love science." 
- Robynnique Ford, 8th Grade Young Women's College Prep
"It is exciting to meet kids our age and we all come from different backgrounds. It is nice to meet new people. We were testing a bunch of water samples, and it is exciting to see exactly what is in it"
- Sarah Hentschke, 8th Grade Mercy High School
Reduce Rain Runoff Program Initiated by Sustainable Long Island

Sustainable Long Island partnered with the  East Islip Green Academy to install rain gardens, which prevents pollution runoff from entering the water supply within the City of Long Beach. The students participating in the program also created presentations to educate the community about the positive impacts of green infrastructure.

Photo Credit: Sustainable Long Island
Photo Credit: Sustainable Long Isl
" The funding received from NYSP2I made it possible to develop our Reduce Rain Runoff 
project, and as a result of our educational outreach, this effort will aid in advancement of additional projects in our area."  - Ann Fangmann, Executive Director

Seedfolk City Farm Creates Classroom Composting Curriculum

Photo Credit: Seedfolk City Farm
Seedfolk City Farm, an organization dedicated to teaching urban children about agriculture, developed a  compost handbook for use in the 4-6 grade classrooms.  Elementary school students in the Rochester area also participated in a  hands-on 17-week program developed by Seedfolk in which they learned all about comp ost and its benefits as  a soil amendment.

"NYSP2I made it possible to pilot a hands-on educational program and develop a model curriculum for students that explored composting as a method for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. As a result result of the program, more than 300 students learned how and why to compost, and we were able to create and freely share a 6-session, tested, and easy to use curriculum. NYSP2I funding was crucial in making this project a success." 
- Amber Powers, Program Coordinator

Environmental Health
Helping New York State Schools Buy More Green Products

The Healthy Schools Network collaborated with NYSP2I to create a toolkit of free educational materials written for general audiences new to green cleaning. In the Toolkit are free educational materials: 
  • General and targeted presentations for schools and parents
  • Tip sheets for parents, teachers, vendors and school leaders
  • Cleaning for Healthy Schools and National Association of School Nurses Posters
  • Model school district & state policies
  • Instructions for healthy home cleaning
"While there remains a need for schools and districts to further expand their green purchasing, this project allowed for additional outreach materials and opportunities to connect with key state partners, schools and parents. As a result of the support from NYSP2I, we were able to produce high quality materials that we will utilize in the future." 
                                                                                              - Claire Barnett, Executive Director

GrassrootsGrassroots  ChildSafe  School

Grassroots Education developed the ChildSafe School Program to address and provide research on environmental health concerns within schools. Currently their main focus is on diesel exhaust, turf pesticides, and cleaning products.

"The underlying purpose of The ChildSafe School is to educate all stakeholders in the school community about the links between common environmental exposures present in schools, safer and cost effective alternatives and the shaping and implementation of protective policies. The NYSP2I funding enabled us to expand this successful and vital program on Long Island and share resources across the state." 
- Patti Wood, Executive Director

Learn More   |    Visit Website    
NYS Department Of Health Clean, Green & Healthy Schools

The New York State Clean, Green, and Healthy Schools Program goal is to improve the health of the school environment for all school employees, volunteers, students, parents, and guardians. This voluntary program has been developed by a multi-disciplinary Steering Committee to help schools improve their environmental health through voluntary guidelines.

Schools that participate in this program gain the opportunity and  knowledge to create schools with better environmental health. The program provides information for all school occupants on policies, best practices, tools, knowledge, and resources in nine main areas:


  • Indoor Air Quality
  • Energy and Resource Conservation
  • Integrated Pest Management
  • Mold and Moisture
  • Chemical and Environmental Hazards 
  • Cleaning and Maintenance
  • Transportation
  • Construction/Renovation
  • Water Quality

Visit Website

E PA: Sensible Guide For  Healthier School Renovations

Children are often more vulnerable to pollutants than  adults due to differences in behavior and biology, that  can lead to greater exposure and/or unique windows of  susceptibility during development. The US Environmental Protection Agency has many resources to learn more about children's health, the environment, and what you can do.  The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) created a  guide for schools to help ensure students are protected  from the hazards that can occur during renovations.

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Funding provided by a grant from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) received from  the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) © 2017 Rochester Institute   of Technology Any opinions, results, findings, and/or interpretations of data contained herein are the responsibility of Rochester Institute of Technology and its NYS Pollution Prevention Institute and do not represent the opinions, interpretation or policy of the State.