Special Report

Where Are the Greenest Schools in the Country?

The definition of being eco-conscious is so much more than having solar panels on a roof

Manassas Park Elementary School, Manassas, Virginia. Architect: VMDO Architects, PC. (© Sam Kittner)

Kiowa County School Greensburg, Kansas

Kiowa County School
(Farshid Assassi)

On May 4, 2007, a 1.7-mile-wide tornado leveled Greensburg, Kansas. Twelve residents of the tiny town (population: 1,400) were killed, and the damages to the infrastructure were massive. Nearly all of the homes were obliterated, as was the local school. Greensburg, sad as the disaster was, was now a clean slate. So, when it came to rebuilding, the townspeople made every effort to go green. Kiowa County School, completed in July 2010, is a $45 million LEED-Platinum building that serves 250 students from kindergarten through grade 12. Just outside of the junior high laboratory (shown above) is a 50-kilowatt wind turbine that converts the gusts whipping across the prairie into electricity for the school.


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