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Understanding the Process of Achieving Sustainable Schools

October 10, 2018, 8:30 am - 10:30 am
Understanding the Process of Achieving Sustainable Schools

Inefficiency is Old School: The Process of Achieving Sustainable Schools


Students spend over 1000 hours each year in buildings that are too often unhealthy, restrict their ability to learn, require unsustainable amounts of resources to construct and maintain, and contribute substantially to environmental problems such as pollution and climate change.

A recent and rapidly growing trend is designing schools with the specific intent of providing healthy, comfortable, and productive learning environments. However, there is a misconception that these green, high-performance schools are not cost effective — a major obstacle at a time of limited school budgets and an expanding student population.

Join the Portland Green Schools Committee for a Brunch and Learn panel where experts from the field of sustainable school design will discuss the positive impact of these high performance schools on occupant health, student educational outcomes, budgets and school district bottom lines and the overall well-being of the community.


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Our Featured Panelists:
Elin Shepard, Outreach Manager, New Buildings, Energy Trust of Oregon
Chris Linn, Principal, BORA Architects
Elliott Gall, Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, Portland State University
Summer Gorder, Owner + Principal, ecoREAL
Brian Oylear, Senior Project Manager, Heery International, Inc.


Panelists will discuss:

  • The evolution of sustainable schools – what design choices we make now and the impact
  • How high performance schools impact student performance, occupant health, and showcase the non-energy benefits.
  • Real world examples and data for convincing owners and districts to choose to a high performance design path.
  • The payoff for choosing the path to higher performance buildings as opposed to business as usual design.
  • How to prioritize the no cost/low cost options for improving the school built environment.
  • Setting school and district policies to ensure buildings are designed and operated to the desired outcome.


The event will be held at DOWA-IBI Group. Light refreshments will be provided. Questions? Contact the Green Schools Committee at greenschoolsportlandor@gmail.com

A special thank you to DOWA-IBI Group for sponsoring this event.


This event is part of Sustainable Building Week.


About the Portland Green Schools Committee
The mission of the Portland Green Schools Committee is to promote sustainability in school design and operation through advocacy and education of stakeholders about best practices for healthy and productive school facilities.


Cover image: Sandy High School, Courtesy of Josh Partee.


907 SW Stark St
Portland, OR 97205 United States
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