The NJ Sustainable Schools Consortium (NJSSC) is a Green Initiative out of the EIRC.  It’s goal is to educate key stakeholders on the best sustainable practices, technologies, and green curriculum that will help lower the operational costs of schools, create healthier learning environments, and promote student academic achievement.  It is composed of prominent leadership organizations in education, industry, and non-formal environmental education organizations.

A central theme running throughout Consortium programs is that school buildings should be utilized as teaching and learning labs through which students can understand that green planning, design, maintenance and operation will significantly reduce the negative impact of their building on the environment, while at the same time reduce operating costs.  It provides a pathway for students to begin to learn about sustainability at an early age so that we can produce environmental stewards who are prepared for a world of emerging green collar and STEM careers.


Simply put, the end goal is to help all schools become more cost-efficient, and environmentally healthy places to learn, work, and play.  We believe that this can occur through the collaborative efforts of like-minded organizations who see sustainability as a way of life, not just an option.


NJ SSC Guideposts: Green Ribbon Schools Pillars

All of the NJ Sustainable Schools Consortium (NJSSC) programs are aligned with the US Department of Education’s Green Ribbon Schools (GRS) Pillars.  We actively assist schools in their journey toward significant achievement of the three ED-GRS pillars:

  1. Reduce Environmental Impact and Energy Efficiency
  2. Create Healthy School Environments
  3. Provide Environmental and Sustainability Education

The EIRC works in collaboration with the New Jersey Department of Education in implementing the program, as well as with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection to provide free resources.  Several other and other NJ organizations participate in the nomination of high achieving schools and districts to the US ED.  See the GRS page for a complete listing of all NJ Organizations involved in Green Ribbon Schools.


Consortium Partners and Collaborators:

NJ Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP), NJ Association of Schools Administrators (NJASA), NJ Schools Buildings and Grounds Association (NJSBGA), Project Learning Tree (PLT) – Green Schools!, Alliance for New Jersey Environmental Education (ANJEE), NJ Audubon – Eco-Schools Program, Collaborative for High Performance Schools (CHPS),  and Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnership (NEEP), EnergySolve.


“Creating Healthier Schools at Lower Costs

The Consortium seeks to assist districts in creating pathways to a sustainable future through the following strategies:

  • Determine a district’s current level of “green” with regard to facilities and curriculum
  • Establish a district “green team”
  • Develop a multi-year Green Strategic Plan that systematically addresses both facility and curriculum needs;
  • Develop Action Steps
  • Identify other key stakeholders who need to be involved in the process
  • Identify resources needed to implement the plan
  • Provide low-cost/ no cost comprehensive  green facilities solutions that save significant $$$$
  • Provide high quality retrofit services at affordable prices
  • Provide a mechanism for collecting energy data for analysis, decision making, and bill payment
  • Provide comprehensive green professional development for facilities personnel
  • Provide high quality sustainability professional development for district administration, faculty, staff, and BOE members;
  • Provide sustainability consultants to guide the district through the process
  • Connect districts into a larger statewide support network focused on creating sustainable schools and communities.
  • Assist schools/district in becoming Green Ribbon Schools Certified and CHPS certified


 For information, contact:  Allison Mulch
856.582.7000 x115


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