Stripling Elementary wins green award

NORCROSS -- Susan O. Stripling Elementary recently earned top county honors as a 2012 Green & Healthy School, an accolade provided by Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful and Gwinnett County Public Schools.

The award recognizes schools, administrators and teachers who implement the Green & Healthy School Program, a join initiative of Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful and the school district.

The program provides a guide for planning, executing and assessing the effectiveness of environmental lessons, activities, standards and school programs. Out of the 81 schools in Gwinnett County that participated in the 2011-12 program, Stripling was named a top-level participant.

The Green & Healthy School program provides educational tool kits that aim to give teachers the resources to teach children about water pollution, waste reduction and recycling.

Stripling Principal Priscilla McHam said the program is an effective teaching tool.

"Kids are engaged in learning practical things that they can relate to in the real world, and they learn to be accountable for creating and maintaining a clean and healthy school environment," McHam said. "It's an achievement the whole school worked together to earn."

McHam credited her staff. "It's a joy to have such innovative and talented teachers in our building, taking lead in teaching our kids to take care of our planet," she said. "This honor is the result of Merle Soodyall and Alison Doherty's leadership with our recycled crayons and organic gardening clubs."

Norcross Mayor Bucky Johnson chimed in: "There is an incredible amount of positive energy and creativity at Stripling, and I applaud Ms. McHam's leadership and her school's accomplishment."

For more information about the Green & Healthy School Program, visit www.gwinnettcb.org and click on the heading, "Get Educated."