Building a Green Campus

High Desert Montessori and Sustainable Nevada are working together to LEED certify the school's campus.

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The High Desert Montessori School Board of Directors has designated three buildings for LEED Certification. The buildings, plus an outdoor learning environment, comprise the school campus. The project is under the management of the EcoStudents Task Force.

LEED, or Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design, is a green building certification program that recognizes best-in-class building strategies and practices. To receive LEED certification, building projects satisfy prerequisites and earn points to achieve different levels of certification. Prerequisites and credits differ for each rating system, and teams choose the best fit for their project.

LEED certified buildings save money and resources and have a positive impact on the health of occupants, while promoting renewable, clean energy. They transform the way we think about how buildings and communities are designed, constructed, maintained and operated across the globe.

Under our LEED Building Certification program, Sustainable Nevada will help High Desert Montessori design, construct, renovate and overhaul the school campus. We will jointly pursue the highest level of LEED certification (LEED BD+C Platinum and LEED EBO+M Platinum) for the campus. In the process, we will be conducting longitudinal studies on the student population to determine any correlations between healthy buildings and improved student performance.

Under this program, the physical buildings and the surrounding outdoor spaces will serve as living laboratories, giving students direct access to sustainability and permaculture principles through place-based and project-based learning.

Interior spaces will give us an opportunity to explore the built environment and the aspects of a healthy building. Interior projects will focus heavily on design and engineering skills and give the students opportunities to explore variations and technology applications in the built environment.

Outdoor spaces will emphasize the living world and our role in creating and maintaining sustainable environments. Outdoor projects will allow students to explore the role of humans in building and maintaining sustainable, biodiverse ecosystems.

The LEED Building Certification program is the platform for the development and implementation of the Sustainability Curriculum.