Become a Sustainability Captain

For the 2018-2019 School year, Oregon Green Schools Association is seeking committed leaders to become the Sustainability Captains at their school. This position is available to rural schools in locations with less than 23,000 people or designated as Title 1.

Sustainability Captains Responsibilities:

  1. Recruit and work throughout the year with a student green team at their school.
  2. Complete waste, water, and energy investigations and implement conservation practices throughout the year.
  3. Work with the administrator, building engineer/facility manager, and custodian on school-wide sustainability efforts.
  4. Train and educate other teachers and the school/student community on efforts in the school.
  5. Complete self-evaluation reports 3 times throughout the year to report on milestone progress and completion. $150 after first eval, $150 after second and $200 at the end.
  6. Apply for Oregon Green School Certification.
  7. Attend online trainings that Oregon Green Schools provides to gather tools, inspiration and build a community of leaders.
  8. Attend the annual Green School Summit or a regional Showcase if applicable.

 Position Details:

  • This position is managed by the Oregon Green School Association.
  • The administrator of the school must agree to support the Sustainability Captain and school green team efforts.
  • At the end of the school year and upon completion the above goals, the Sustainability Captain will receive a stipend of $500, to be paid in three installments $150 after first evaluation, $150 after second and $200 at the end of the school year upon completion of all follow up self-evaluations reports.

Why is this important for Oregon?

When students direct their learning through their own projects, they gain a deeper understanding and are more willing to make community changes in the future. Green team efforts support Environmental Literacy in Oregon. When the whole school community works as a team to conserve resources they learn to make choices that fulfill the needs of the present generation while simultaneously supporting nature’s inherent ability to sustain life into the future. It is good for our state, our students, our schools and our communities.

Getting Started:

There are two steps to becoming a Sustainability Captain for your school.

  1. School Administrator Support.
    Your school administrator must sign off on your participation and agree to support your effort.
  2. Complete Sustainability Captain Application.
  3. Once your application has been received, OGSA will be in touch to help you get started. OGSA will provide you with support through project ideas, and virtual trainings and webinars to help answer your questions.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Who and what is Oregon Green Schools/Eco-Schools USA?
Oregon Green Schools is a nonprofit organization that was formed in 1997. We have regional coordinators throughout the state and nearly 175 participating schools in our statewide certification program.

Our regional coordinators help schools set and achieve sustainability goals, conduct waste audits, provide guidance and training for new programs and recommend curriculum resources and grant opportunities.

We have three levels of certification, Entry, Merit and Primer which reflect the school’s accomplishments and commitment to sustainability over time. Certification lasts for three years and our current pathways to certification revolve around the conservation of natural resources through water, energy and waste.

We jointly certify all schools with The National Wildlife Foundation’s Eco-Schools USA, an international network of schools working to make an impact in their local school communities. When you certify with Oregon Green Schools you also gain access to Eco-Schools USA’s curriculum resources and additional sustainability certification pathways that explore expanded facets of sustainability.

What is the goal of this program? What is a Sustainability Captain?
OGS will provide support and financial incentives to develop Sustainability Captains around the state. This program is targeted toward schools that need support to establish sustainability education and Green Teams and are located in either rural areas, with a population of less than 23,000 or schools designated Title 1.

The Sustainability Captain will organize a student Green Team and work with students to guide sustainability projects and meet benchmarks of participation throughout the year. The Captain will also work with the Green Team to apply for an entry-level Oregon Green School/Eco-School Certification. For this work, the Sustainability Captain receives a stipend of $500 that is paid out in 3 number of installments throughout the school year.

Who is eligible? What schools are eligible?
A Sustainability Captain can be any individual employed at a school, who commits to working with students on Green Team sustainability efforts throughout the school year and apply for certification. In order to be approved as a Sustainability Captain, the school administrator  must read through and sign the position description form.

The Sustainability Captain must be placed at a school that is either:

  • In a location with a population of less than 23,000.
  • Listed as a Title I school.

What are the student green teams responsible for? How do I work with them effectively?Student Green Teams are responsible for investigations about waste, energy and water. We have several resources that can support you and the team’s efforts as well as trainings throughout the year to support you. We will try to pair one of our regional coordinators or Program coordinators with you to serve as a virtual coach to answer any question about the process throughout the year. Green teams should plan to take on special projects unique to their interests, needs and goals for resource conservation.

What is the stipend?
The Sustainability Captain will receive a stipend of $500 upon completion of specific deliverables. The stipend will be paid in three installments: $150 after first self-evaluation, $150 after second self-evaluation and $200 at the end of the school year upon completion of all follow up self-evaluations reports. The stipend is based upon the completion of benchmarks. You will be receiving a W-9 to complete for the stipend of $500.

How do I get the stipend? What can I do with the money?
The stipend is provided in three installments, in the form of checks written directly to the Sustainability Captain

The stipend helps support the time and hard work of the Sustainability Captain throughout the year, similar to an extra duty contract. Some districts in Oregon have adopted a similar method of stipends for the staff and had great success. In order to receive the stipend, the Sustainability Captain must complete the three self-evaluations and demonstrate through the evaluations progress on the Benchmarks and goals.

What is the Self-Evaluation?
The Self-Evaluation is a meant to check in on progress for the year and to gauge the efforts at the school.

It is completed by the Sustainability Captain using the Self-Evaluation Form (OGS will provide). The Sustainability Captain must complete this form and return it to Oregon Green Schools. OGS will review the form and provide a response: Approved, Follow-Up Needed, Denied. When a Self-Evaluation is approved, the Sustainability Captain will receive the stipend. OGS reserves the right to require revisions or deny the Self-Evaluation forms if it is not complete or comprehensive.

Who manages the program? What is the source of the funding?
Oregon Green Schools manages the program and provides oversight of the Sustainability Captains. OGS received funding through the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality.

Does my school administrator need to know about this position?
Yes. Oregon Green Schools requires your administrator to read, sign and return the position detail document to OGS. The administration should understand your role, the scope of activities throughout the year, and support the program.

How do I know what to do with my team of students?
There are many ways to lead your school and students but we will provide you with some steps to make the process easier.

Are there required trainings? Do I need to travel?
There will be three one-hour scheduled trainings throughout the school year. Participation in trainings is required through web-based webinars and recordings.

No other travel is required.

What is the deadline to apply?
Please apply for this position by October 12, 2018.

Further Questions?