Elections 2019 – Questions to School Committee Candidates

The places where we live, learn, work and play have significant impacts on students, teachers and families, as well as on our local and global environment. School Committee members are in a position to impact sustainable practices in school facilities – including energy savings, waste management, and promoting a healthy environment for all -, and can help create opportunities to strengthen the environmental literacy of our students and staff. 

It’s important to note that sustainability is now part of the Newton Public Schools Systemwide Goals for 2020, approved on 09/16 by the current School Committee

We believe sustainability is a crucial dimension of the School Committee’s responsibility to Newton students, so we asked all candidates running for School Committee what they think about it.

There are 11 candidates for 8 seats. Only three seats are contested, but we wanted to hear from all candidates, so we sent the questions to all of them. The responses from those who accepted our invitation to answer in writing are listed alphabetically.

Questions

1. Can you share any relevant background or accomplishments you have in the area of environmental sustainability? See responses

2. In your decision making about the Newton Public Schools, where would you place environmental sustainability among your priorities? See responses

3. Please describe how sustainability would factor into your decision-making process regarding fitting major school construction/renovation projects and daily operation of school buildings. What do you think can better support healthy, resource-efficient and environmentally friendly learning spaces? See  responses

4. Newton schools lack a comprehensive approach to teaching environmental topics across grades K-12. The curriculum ought to do more to educate students about the science of climate change and how it is impacting all life and ecosystems on our planet. Students should also learn about green technology innovation, in order to prepare them to work in a clean energy economy. In your view, how might the School Committee prioritize education on environmental topics in our schools? See responses

5. Green Newton School Connections Group has been working on several initiatives. Would you like to comment on one or more of them? See responses

Please share with your friends and neighbors — and please VOTE on Nov 5th! Here is information about the 2019 municipal elections

Answers

2019 School Committee Question 2

In your decision making about the Newton Public Schools, where would you place environmental sustainability among your priorities? 

2019 School Committee Question 3

Please describe how sustainability would factor into your decision-making process regarding fitting major school construction/renovation projects and daily operation of school buildings. What do you think can better support healthy, resource-efficient and environmentally friendly learning spaces?

2019 School Committee Question 4

Newton schools lack a comprehensive approach to teaching environmental topics across grades K-12. The curriculum ought to do more to educate students about the science of climate change and how it is impacting all life and ecosystems on our planet. Students should also learn about green technology innovation, in order to prepare them to work in a clean energy economy. In your view, how might the School Committee prioritize education on environmental topics in our schools?  

2019 School Committee Question 5

Green Newton School Connections Group has been working on several initiatives. Would you like to comment on one or more of them?