photo: The Green School
Read more: An innovative new sustainable school opens in Bali. Students from all over the globe learn the latest in green living while living in paradise.This fall marked the first semester of Bali's Green School. Founders Cynthia and John Hardy opened the school with the goal of having minimal impact on the land and with the stunning Ayung River as its backdrop, it's a good thing. As often seems the case with this enthralling utopia, Cynthia and John Hardy landed in Bali over thirty years ago and never left. Cynthia, an American, was on an around the world trip before she planned to head to law school at Berkeley and John, a Canadian artist had made his way to Bali for artistic inspiration. Nearly four decades later the couple has opened the Green School, an International School for students from pre-kindergarten through eighth grade that embraces sustainable practices in education and entrepreneurship.
The Green School's Eco-Features
The school's 75 buildings are cooled and powered with renewable energy sources like micro-hydro power, solar power, and bio-diesel. Bamboo, lalang-alang grass (a local grass), and traditional mud walls form the structure of the buildings.
The school was carefully built on 20 acres of land and is on an organic permaculture system, designed to work in perfect cohesion with the natural ecology of the land. A thriving organic garden to be cultivated by the school's own students will grow fruits and vegetables, herbs, and other crops including chocolate.
Why Start the Green School?
The Hardys' lifelong commitment to the environment began with their sustainable jewelry company, John Hardy Jewelry, which they started twenty years ago. The brand focuses on traditional Balinese techniques and the importance of respecting the Balinese culture and their land. Today, the luxury brand is sold internationally and can be found at Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue.
Their next goal was to shape the minds of the next generation of ecologically responsible citizens and the Green School became the perfect avenue. With the Green School, they envision a generation that has never used a plastic bag and lives in a society where the word organic is obsolete because everything is organic.
The Green School's Curriculum
The Green School hopes to turn its students into responsible global citizens that respect all people and things. And while traditional subjects like math, language arts, social studies, science, a second language, and the arts still remain the focus, students can also spread their entrepreneurial wings in courses like gourmet chocolate production, organic farming, and new methods of sustainable building with bamboo.
The school hopes to enroll students from both the local and global community. Teachers will also be from a wide spectrum of backgrounds both Balinese and other cultures. Within a few years the whole campus will be a year-round community of summer camps and symposia. The campus will host environmentalists and change makers from all over the globe giving students the opportunity to learn about the importance of respecting the planet year round.
Learn more about a greener school on Treehugger:
Grading Green Schools: The College Sustainability Report Card 2009
Green School Fundraising with Carbon Offsets
Florida School Saves Energy, Cash With 4 Day Week
Middle School Student Invents Ingenious Water Saving Device