Green Schoolyards America inspires and enables communities to enrich their school grounds and use them to improve children’s well-being, learning and play while contributing to the ecological health and resilience of their cities.
Public school districts are one of the largest landowners in almost every city and town across the United States and around the world. Across the United States, over 98,000 public schools serve more than 50 million pre-kindergarten to 12th grade students every day, and collectively manage an estimated 2 million acres of land. Choices made by school districts about how they manage their landscapes profoundly impact their city and generations of local residents whose perspectives are shaped through daily, outdoor experiences at school.
Green Schoolyards America envisions a future in which public school grounds are used strategically to improve the well-being of children, their communities, and the urban environment at the same time. To achieve this, we are working toward the following outcomes:
CHILDREN: All children and youth have daily access to nature on their own school grounds to improve their learning, play, health, and social environments. Students and the school community act as stewards of their school grounds, actively taking part in shaping and caring for their shared public space.
COMMUNITY: School grounds are vibrant, lively centers for their neighborhoods—used and valued during the school day for academic and recreational purposes and by their communities after hours. Public infrastructure on school grounds is well cared for and resources are equitably distributed.
ENVIRONMENT: School grounds act as green infrastructure for their cities, helping to foster healthy urban watersheds, robust wildlife habitats and corridors, improved climate change mitigation, and better air quality.
We invite like-minded professionals and organizations to collaborate with us to nurture and grow the national and international movements to green school grounds for all children.