Calvert School is committed to sustainability. We foster knowledge, respect, and care for the environment and aim to understand our impact on it.
Students learn about the environment at an early age. Our Lower School students learn about gardens and how they grow, water conservation, alternative energy, and the three R’s–reduce, reuse, and recycle—and help collect recycling.
This regard for our environment continues into Middle School, where teachers empower students to play an active role in the greening of Calvert. In Sixth Grade, students spend three months investigating the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, which is capped by a week-long outdoor education experience at Echo Hill Outdoor School. Students also spend two months learning the science of climate change and alternative energy.
Each April, Calvert celebrates our green efforts with a full week of activities focusing on being an environmentally conscious school community. Our Eighth Graders join our Fifth Agers as they plant bulbs along Canterbury Road. Our Fifth Grade cleans up trash along Stony Run. Meanwhile our Sixth Graders lead fun and interactive campus green tours for their Lower School friends. All students in all grades lend a helping hand in this incredible week.
Calvert School is a certified Maryland Green School. The Maryland Association of Environmental and Outdoor Education (MAEOE) founded the Green Schools Program in 1999. Only 20% of Maryland’s schools are celebrated as certified Green Schools. Calvert earned its recognition in May 2012 after a comprehensive, two-year application process and were re-certified in May 2016.
Calvert School’s beautiful campus has many areas that help impact the environment in a positive way and serve as wonderful teaching tools for our students:
A butterfly garden along the walkway between our Lower and Middle Schools incorporates over two dozen varieties of native plants and attracts over ten species of butterflies. The garden serves as a teaching tool for science classes and is a certified Monarch Waystation by the University of Kansas’ Monarch Waystation Program. It was designed in 2012 by WOCO Gardens (Wolfgang Oehme and Carol Oppenheimer).
Molly’s Garden is a 4,000 square foot forest and stream habitat restored in 2008. The garden not only serves as a schoolyard habitat, but it is also a native, organic garden. The garden is maintained without chemicals and fertilizers thus reducing chemical runoff into the local stream system. It is dedicated in memory of Molly Harris ’13 and designed by WOCO Gardens.
Calvert School makes a sustained effort to minimize waste and maximize recycling. With single-stream recycling, it is estimated we recycle 30 yards per week of cardboard, plastic, and glass. Additionally, we recycle six tons of paper annually, which students help collect.
We also recycle all computer and technology waste, producing 2,500 lbs. in 2012. Our lunches are now environmentally friendly, as we use recycled, compostable plates and are Styrofoam free.
322 solar panels on the south roof of Francis J. Carey ’38 Hall produce 112,640 kWh annually and save the school approximately $27,034 in energy costs and solar renewable energy credits (SRECs) each year. The solar array also offsets 75 tons of CO2 produced annually, which is the equivalent of 423 trees planted per year, avoiding 100,250 miles driven in a car, or powering Ravens Stadium for 56 days. Data generated by the solar energy system will be utilized as a key teaching tool throughout our science program.