Tower students know the importance of caring for the environment. As a school, we model thoughtful decision-making about use (and re-use) of resources, and create an environment that encourages students' participation in and leadership of sustainability efforts. Together, we're helping students gain skills they'll need to create a sustainable, environmentally healthy future.
Our sustainability commitment is a work-in-progress. Please check back often for updates.
Carbon Offsetting through a Costa Rican Rainforest.
The Hintlian family generously donated 15 hectares of newly-planted Costa Rican rainforest to Tower through the organization, Reforest The Tropics (RTT). The forest is planted on the site of a former sugar cane field and is now home to native hardwoods and various shade-tolerant species. As the trees mature, they will offset 100% of Tower School’s carbon production.
The growth of this carbon-capturing forest presents unique opportunities for learning through science, math, social studies, and Spanish. Student work could include tracking forest growth, Skyping in Spanish with farmers, and learning how carbon offsetting can be a valuable tool in reducing our collective environmental impact.
We're grateful for this unique and forward-thinking gift to Tower.
Rooftop Solar Array
Our solar panels, installed in 2012, are the result of a collaborative gift from a Tower family.
Students learn about clean energy sources in science class, and as part of that discussion, they study Tower's solar panel technology. Students monitor the impact of variables, such as daylight hours and weather, on energy production.
Demonstrating the active use of renewable energy in schools sets a wonderful example for the community as well as for students.
- Susan Livingston, Tower parent of an alumna and former Board Member
Water Quality throughout the School Is Tested Regularly.
In addition to testing, all of the water fountains and water bottle refill stations on campus are filtered to ensure purity for the health of our students and faculty.
Air Quality on our campus is a priority.
We're in compliance with the state's anti-idling laws. Parents are asked to turn their engines off when waiting to pick up their children each afternoon.
Tower's Organically Maintained Campus
Tower's grass fields, teaching garden and green spaces are organically maintained.
We use non-toxic cleaning supplies for cleaning Tower's rugs, floors, windows, walls, kitchen, bathrooms and classrooms.
Student-Faculty Environmental Committee
Our Environmental Committee identifies opportunities through which our community can use fewer resources and reduce the amount of waste we generate by improving our recycling and composting.
As a result of our students' work, Tower:
- minimized the use of single-use plastics throughout the school, including plastic cups, plates, bowls, utensils and water bottles;
- installed a filtered water bottle refill station and experienced a dramatic reduction of recyclable plastic bottle use;
- prioritizes paper recycling through awareness campaigns, well-placed recycling stations plus weekly recycling collection service;
- composts fruit peels, apple cores and vegetables from our morning snack service creating nutrient-dense soil for our gardens;
- has an increased awareness of ways to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels. Students encourage the whole community to ride their bikes to school or share a car ride.
Small Changes, Big Impact
In our classrooms and offices, we use paper certified by the Forest Stewardship Council to have been sourced in an environmentally and socially responsible manner.
Our Admission Office's events often include refreshments. At the suggestion of our students, we've switched from plastic to paper plates, and replaced single-use water bottles with refillable glasses and mugs.
In our faculty room, we've replaced single-use coffee pods with freshly brewed coffee.
As updates are made to our campus, we're making choices that conserve heat, electricity and raw materials.