Students, teachers and building professionals participated in 12 events across Romania to promote greener schools

October 3, 2012 at 5:18 pm | Posted in Academics, Building Greener Schools, Events, Green Building Projects | Leave a comment
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The Romania Green Building Council (RoGBC) in partnership with the Ministry of Education launched the nationwide “Construieste Scoli Verzi” (Building Greener Schools) campaign to take action to renovate and construct Romania’s kindergartens, schools and universities toward better environmental and energy performance.

The campaign included seven initiatives organized by students and their teachers from kindergarten through high school that emphasized the importance of taking better care of the environment.   The RoGBC and Ministry of Education organized five additional events to train and build awareness about the importance of the school facilities themselves to improving health, reducing absenteeism, achieving better learning outcomes, and reducing maintenance and energy costs for the nation’s school system.[1]

“We were pleased to have such an enthusiastic response from the Ministry of Education, teachers, parents and students to support this initiative.     It is clear that in addition to the many important considerations contributing to a quality education, the condition of the facilities where we study matter greatly.” says Cristina Siu, Leader of the RoGBC’s “Construieste Scoli Verzi” Campaign.

The campaign includes a petition to gather signatures of support for green schools from citizens at events and online via the RoGBC’s Facebook campaign[2].   In addition, each of the schools who organized green awareness events have been entered into a contest to win a green renovation of their school facility by the Romania Green Building Council and its member companies.  The winner will be selected on 12 October 2012.

Photos of the events and student projects are available HERE

More details on the specific initiatives:

  1. Green School contest

All schools in Romania interested in expanding their efforts to change the design, construction and operation of education facilities with the objective of engaging children’s learning experiences were invited to participate in a contest to win a substantial prize package to green their school. The contest has been organized in partnership with the Ministry of Education, Research, Youth & Sport.  To be eligible to win, schools in Romania had to conceive, upload, and conduct a “green project or event” on September 29, 2012.  In addition to describing the intended project or event within www.MyGreenApple.org, applicants had to indicate a brief statement for supporting a green renovation project by the school principal, local school administration official, and by the mayor of the city (if possible).

We were pleased to receive submission from kindergartens, schools and high-schools from different cities in Romania:

  • Bucharest:
    • Ion Neculce high-school; Project name: ”Ride the bike no matter the age”.  2012 was declared by the European Commission the European Year of Active  and Intergenerational Solidarity. This is why the school initiated a campaign in collaboration with the Municipality of Bucharest to promote bicycle use for leisure as a means of recreation and healthy life at any age. High school students  opened  dialogue with people of the third age and promoted the message of maintaining an active life with unique illustrations created by the students.
    • George Cosbuc high-school. Project name: “Blossoming the Enviroment”; the studentscleaned the green spaces within their  schoolyard in order to have a more proper view and tidier surroundings.
  • Cluj-Napoca:
    • Transilvania College: The teachers, parents and children of Transylvania College got together for the Annual Welcome Brunch, that this year had an environmental theme, to celebrate “Green Apple Day of Service.” The event took place outdoors, in a beautiful wooden area. The children participated in an Origami workshop where they learned to make green apples out of recycled paper. All the apples adorned the Transylvania College tree, their school symbol.

To further raise awareness about the importance of this day, Mr. Dorin Beu, President of RoGBC Transylvania joined the Transilvania College  team, to speak about the health benefits of studying in green buildings.

    • Biobee Kindergarten: Play is an essential component of healthy development in children, and playgrounds provide an opportunity for children to develop motor, cognitive, perceptual and social skills.  Unfortunately, playgrounds are often the sites of unintentional injuries.  The leading cause of playground equipment-related fatalities is strangulation, and the majority of these deaths occur on home playgrounds. The event organized by Biobee Kindergarten had a simple purpose: to raise the level of awareness within adults to take care of parks. The action took place in the Center Park of Cluj City. Children brought apples with them and played games, made drawings and paintings.
    • Cojocna Middle- School: Project Name: “Recycle waste for a cleaner nature”; Motto: “Don’t through away today what you can use tomorrow!” Students made from recyclable materials like: PET, aluminum, cans, straw, paper, wood, polystyrene, plastic bottles etc paintings and hand made craft that will be displayed within the school’s green corner, to demonstrate to their colleagues and  parents and that want a green change in people’s mentality.
  • Sibiu:  Casolt Middle School; “We care” project – rehabilitation of schools sorroundings; planting flowers and trees.
  • Alba Iulia: Calnic Middle School: “A better school for a better future” – cleaning the areas around the school and the Medieval Fortress.
  • Dambovita – Gura Sutii Kindergarten: cleaning the kindergarten’s courtyard that is full of plastic and paper waste.

The prize of the contest consists in the implementation of the renovation process as described in the letter provided by the school in correlation with the evaluation report prepared by the partner companies leading the green building revolution in Romania. The campaign partners offer effective solutions to dramatically improve health and learning ability of our schools occupants as well as the energy efficiency and environmental responsibility associated with the construction and renovation process. The prize package includes planning and design services, project management, ecological building materials and coatings, sustainable landscaping, and energy efficient and green energy technology.

The contest was held in coordination with the “Green Apple International Day of Service”;  an awareness building initiative created by the U.S. Green Building Council’s Center for Green Schools supported by the World Green Building Council and implemented locally by the Romania Green Building Council.

The winning school will be announced on October 12th.  Please visit www.RoGBC.org for more information.

  1. 28 to 30 September 2012 – Exhibition for Building Greener Schools. The RoGBC organized an exhibition at the National Real Estate Fair in Bucharest to demonstrate the importance of building and operating the nation’s schools to make them healthier, more energy efficient and with significantly less environmental impact.    Student volunteers from the Romania Green Building Council’s Associate Member program collected signatures from visitors who wished to express their support for the Building Greener Schools campaign.  Those signatures will be combined with those collected online at the RoGBC’s Facebook campaign described above.
  1. 28 September 2012 – Introduction to Green Schools discussion  – dedicated to increasing understanding of why and how to design, construct and operate green schools.   Cristian Popescu, CEO of Cofely Romania, Steven Borncamp, President of RoGBC, and Sergiu Vasile Moga, Director of the State Secretary’s cabinet delivered presentations to educators, school planners, facility managers and the building community.   The presentation included examples to demonstrate how energy efficient and environmentally responsible solutions improve learning, increase attendance of students and faculty, improve health and save money.
  1. 29 September 2012 – Parent’s day Transilvania College (formerly International School of Cluj) –  hosted parents’ day to welcome the parents and students back to the school year.   The event kicked off a public campaign to raise funds for the school’s own new annex building which will be constructed to the highest sustainable construction standards.    In addition, funds will be raised through the RoGBC’s “Building Greener Schools” campaign to be made available to a public school in need of a green renovation; a project to be planned an designed during this school year and completed over the summer break in 2013.  Simona Baciu, the school’s Director, highlighted the recent green features of its building expansion as well as plans for the new “deep green” annex.
  1. 29 September 2012 – Ecobiblioteca workshop. The Romania Green Building Council (RoGBC) and its member companies have renovated the library of the village of Cacica, Romania to become one of the greenest buildings in Europe.   The building is aspiring to “full petal recognition” of the ambitious Living Building Challenge standard and to achieve LEED Platinum certification.   29 September 2012 included activites for the community’s school children to learn about this very special building and the surrounding sustainable landscaping and amphitheatre.  The RoGBC conducted a workshop to finalize the design of the interior and exterior furniture, childrens’ playground and sustainable landscaping plan. more information on the project is available here: http://www.rogbc.org/en/ecobiblioteca

We will count all signatures and deliver them to the Ministry of Education, Research, Youth & Sport to demonstrate the level of interest of the entire community in building and operating greener schools.


[1] According to the Building Research Establishment (www.BRE.co.uk), Green Schools improve tests scores by 18% and can reduce maintenance and operating costs by 40% to 50%

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