The Broward County Environmental Protection and Growth Management Department (EPGMD) believes that educating school age children about the environment and their role in preserving and protecting the natural resources for the future instills environmental stewardship at an early age. In an effort to support environmental education in Broward County, the EPCRD and the Broward County Public Schools (BCPS), have partnered for over 10 years to provide a wide range of initiatives to improve environmental stewardship and sustainability.
Environmental Partnership at a Glance
Classroom presentations and campus tours: Each year our educators give classroom presentations for thousands of students, as well as campus tours, so far reaching over 75,000 students.
Green Schools Recognition Program: The P3 (Preserving Our Planet for Posterity) Eco-Challenge has awarded over $130,000 cash, prizes, and in-kind items for students, schools, and teachers in recognition of their environmental work.
Schoolyard Enhancement: Over 200 butterfly, fruit, and learning gardens have been installed on campuses with students. BCPS became the first National Wildlife Federation (NWF) Certified School District in the country due to our work with the District and NWF.
Water Matters Day: Our annual event, which attracts approximately 4,500 people at TreeTops Park, includes opportunities for students to win the Annual Essay Contest and/or volunteer for school credit.
Tools and Training
Custodial Training: Hands-on Facilities personnel trainings on outdoor and indoor water conservation techniques are provided to the school, so far reaching over 1,000 school staff.
Irrigation evaluations: Over 600 irrigation evaluations have been completed at 285 schools, resulting in annual savings of $923,000 and over 382 million gallons per year. Additionally, installation of soil sensors and smart controllers provided by a SFWMD grant.
Schoolscapes Newsletter: A biannual newsletter published in June and December highlighting our work in the schools.
SchoolsScapes September 2019
Teacher Trainings: Over 750 teachers have attended our NatureScape one-day trainings, and NWF Habitat Steward trainings.
Water Audits: 20 schools have received water audits, with identified potential annual savings of over $550,000 and savings of over 25 million gallons per year.
How Low Can You Go Energy and Water Challenge: EPCRD partners with BCPS in the How Low Challenge, which is in its 6th Annual Miami Heat Challenge and expanded to all Florida K-12 schools. The cost savings in energy over the 4 years is $449,619, with kWh 4,517,751 reduced. It began a water reduction element in 2016-2017 school year with a water savings of 3 million gallons.
EPCRD is continually exploring opportunities for new curriculum, programs, tools, and trainings to offer to students, teachers, and staff to improve programming to the school community.
As part of the partnership, the P3 Eco-Challenge is held each school year to recognize the implementation of sustainability efforts within the schools and their communities. Outstanding BCPS environmental stewards were celebrated at the Sixth Annual P3 (Preserving Our Planet for Posterity) Eco-Challenge Awards Ceremony held on May 8, 2019 at the Long Key Nature Center in Davie. Platinum sponsor Steam City Kids and Gold sponsors Publix, Nova Southestern University, National Wildlife Federation, Hazen, Everglades Holiday Park, JM Family Enterprises, along with a number of Silver, Bronze and Eco-Friend sponsors contributed to this inspiring event.