City of Ventura names 2016-2017 Green School Award winners

Juanamaria Elementary School honored by Ventura City Council. Photo by Michael Gordon.

In celebration of Earth Day, the Ventura City Council presented the annual Green School Award for achievement in environmental excellence to students and staff from Juanamaria Elementary School and ATLAS Elementary School. 2017 Watershed Hero Award Winner! These prestigious Green School Awards) were presented on Monday, April 17th in front of the City Council in honor of Earth Day.

This year’s winners, Juanamaria Elementary School and ATLAS Elementary School, created programs and projects that increase recycling, build wildlife habitats and reduce waste and water consumption.

“Many public and private schools in Ventura have been working hard to demonstrate environmental leadership in our community,” said Haili Matsukawa Environmental Services Specialist at Ventura Water. “Every year since 2007 the City of Ventura has recognized and encouraged those school efforts through nominations and selection of a competitive annual ‘Green School’ award, presented in partnership with Agromin Premium Soil Products and EJ Harrison & Sons, Inc. who provide the annual $500 cash award.”

Students and staff at ATLAS Elementary School have demonstrated excellence in sustainability through their recycling, electronic waste and battery collection programs. Starting at a young age, students at ATLAS Elementary School are taught to be good stewards of the environment. In their Makerspace classroom, students engineer their own designs out of recyclable materials. In recognition of their efforts, the City will present them with the 2016-2017 Environmental Leadership Award.

Juanamaria Elementary School has made extraordinary efforts to conserve water by converting turfed areas into sustainable landscapes. Students of all ages were involved in mulching and planting of the school’s new Science Garden. In an upcoming project Juanamaria Elementary School has partnered with Surfrider Foundation’s Ocean Friendly Garden group to design a water wise reading garden for students and teachers to enjoy nature. For this reason, Ventura Water will present them with the 2016-2017 Watershed Hero Award.

For more information about the City of Ventura’s Green School Awards program, visit or contact Brandon Kaysen, Environmental Sustainability at 652-4593 or Haili Matsukawa, Ventura Water at 652-4501.


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