Lake Washington School District receives national environmental award

In 2012, custodians at Lake Washington School District (LWSD) decided to move their schools in a greener direction, and nearly five years later, their efforts paid off with the top level Green Cleaning award.

The award is presented by the American School and University Magazine and recognizes education institutions that implement environmentally friendly practices.

Kathryn Reith, communications director for the district, said the benefits to their enhanced cleaning processes are twofold.

“Certainly some people are chemically sensitive, so there is a health benefit to reducing the numbers and kinds of chemicals,” she said. “There is an environmentally friendly aspect, so we want to make sure that we are good stewards of the environment around us.”

LWSD received the top award, followed by a silver-award winner and an honorable mention for K-12 districts.

The 2017 Grand Award for higher education went to Western Michigan University.

Reith said the drive to improve environmental practices was initiated from the ground up.

“I think it really came out of the support services department,” she said.

According to the magazine’s website, the head custodians from the districts’ 43 sites worked to evaluate the effectiveness of the new products and procedures.

This resulted in the district reducing the number of regular cleaning chemicals to four as well as color-coding microfiber cloths so chemicals don’t mix.

A slew of other changes to their procedure were implemented, ranging from using 40 percent recycled material in all paper products and using chemical dispensers using highly concentrated containers to reduce waste.

The 110 LWSD custodians serve 29,000 students and are responsible for maintaining nearly 3.7 million square feet with an annual cleaning budget of more than $8.2 million.

More in News

An aerial photo shows the locations of two earthquakes and five aftershocks in and near Monroe, which rattled the Puget Sound region early Friday. The first was the magnitude 4.6 quake at upper right, 13 miles under the intersection of U.S. 2 and Fryelands Boulevard SE at 2:51 a.m. The second, magnitude 3.5, occurred 18 miles under the Old Snohomish-Monroe Road at 2:53 a.m. The aftershocks followed during the ensuing two hours. This image depicts an area about 3 miles wide. (Herald staff and the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network)
Early wake-up call: Twin quakes under Monroe rattle region

Thousands of people felt them. They were magnitude 4.6 and 3.5 and hit minutes apart.

Courtesy photo
King County Sheriff’s Office has been giving ICE unredacted information

Both the office and jail have supplied the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.

‘Feedback loops’ of methane, CO2 echo environmental problem beyond Washington

University of Washington among researchers of climate change’s effects in global temperatures.

Redmond investment advisor sentenced to five years for wire fraud, falsifying records

He will also pay back more than $4 million in restitution.

Clockwise from top left, Redmond City Council Pos. 7 candidates David Carson, Osama Hamdan, Shad Ansari and Carlos Jimenez. Courtesy photos
Meet the candidates for Redmond council Pos. 7

There are four people running for the position.

Former Microsoft sports marketing director given 28 months prison time for wire fraud

Defendant drug use, tragedy surrounded criminal activity.

Redmond promotes carpooling ahead of summer roadwork, launches new web portal

Nighttime construction on Willows Road set to start soon.

Meet the 2019 mayoral candidates

Birney, Fields and Koeppen are running for Redmond’s top spot.

Most Read