News Release

November 1, 2019


The U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools program is seeking nominations for its 2019-2020 awards.  The deadline for submitting applications is January 24, 2020.

The purpose of the Green Ribbon Schools program is to inspire schools, districts, and institutions of higher education (IHE) to strive for 21st-century excellence by highlighting promising school sustainability practices and resources that can be utilized by anyone.

The award recognizes schools, districts, and IHEs that:

  1. Reduce environmental impact and costs;
  2. Improve the health and wellness of schools, students, and staff; and
  3. Provide effective environmental and sustainability education

Combined progress in all three of these areas serve as the basis for recognition. The program is part of an effort to identify and communicate practices that result in improved student engagement, academic achievement, graduation rates, and workforce preparedness.

Encouraging resource-efficient schools, districts, and IHEs allows administrators to dedicate more resources to instruction rather than operational costs. Healthy schools and wellness practices ensure that all students learn in an environment conducive to achieving their full potential. Outdoor, environmental, and sustainability education help all students engage in hands-on, authentic learning; hone critical thinking and collaboration skills; stay active and fit; and develop a solid foundation in many disciplines.

Examples of innovative practices can be found online at:

Applications and resources for schools and institutions of higher education are available on the Nebraska Department of Education’s Science webpage at:


David Jespersen
Public Information Officer, Nebraska Department of Education