TUPPER LAKE - Once again, the Tupper Lake Green Team has been busy.
The middle/high school environmental club took some time Monday night to tell the school board all about what they've been up to since their last presentation to the board.
Green Team members Gretchen O'Leary, Hannah Klossner, Abby St. Onge and Danielle LaMere told the school board about how they have already embarked on the first goal they made at November's Adirondack Youth Climate Summit at The Wild Center, where they developed their Climate Action Plan for the coming year.
Kathy Eldridge, the left-most person wearing a Green Team T-shirt, joins her club in a presentation to the Tupper Lake Central School District Board of Education Monday night about all the activities they’ve participated in over the year. From left from Eldridge are Gretchen O’Leary, Hannah Klossner, Abby St. Onge and Danielle LaMere, as well as new members of the elementary school Green Team.
(Enterprise photo — Jessica Collier)
Their goal was to get students at the L.P. Quinn Elementary School more involved, and shortly after the YCS, they held their first meeting of the L.P. Quinn Green Team. Eldridge said 26 fifth- and sixth-grade students have signed up for the team already.
They also spent time over the last year with elementary school students, showing them the root cellar and composting facilities they installed at the school through a $2,400 grant from Clean Air Cool Planet.
Team members also talked about other goals they developed from the YCS, including a plan to get the district's students with special needs planting trees, to create a garden and composting station at the middle/high school, to recruit new members and to possibly build an electricity-producing bicycle like one they used at the YCS. Klossner said such a bicycle would help with fundraisers and drumming up interest; some schools have even used such a tool to power their prom.
The Green Team also talked about the field trip they took to North Country School and Keene Central School which compost, raise farm animals and grow gardens that supply the schools' cafeterias.
Team members told the board about some of the events they have held over the year, like the Climate Action Day they had in October. Community businesses and organizations donated about $1,800 in donations of products and food, Eldridge said.
"There was a real sense of community because we got a lot of donations," LaMere said.
Jen Kretser, the staff member at the Wild Center who heads up organization of the YCS every year, joined the Green Team and said she is proud of all they have accomplished over the past few years.
"It's been absolutely phenomenal to watch this Green Team grow," Kretser said.
"We could never accomplish all that we have accomplished without your support," Eldridge told the school officials. "We have the most support of any school district."
At the end of the presentation, members of the new L.P. Quinn Green Team handed out new CFL light bulbs with a green bow tied around each as holiday gifts to everyone in the room.
Superintendent Seth McGowan said he wouldn't usually devote as much time to a student club presentation as he did Monday night, but he said the Green Team has been a great example for other students and pursues so many of the district's goals, including integration for kindergarten through 12th grade, community outreach and teaching real-world life skills.
Board President Dan Mansfield said Green Team members are learning many important skills through their work, including cost analysis, biology, organization, marketing and how to teach other people what they know.
"You're not just talking it; you're out there doing these types of things," Mansfield said to the Green Team. "I applaud you for it; the board applauds you for it. We support you in any way we can."