The Green Committee at Hingham High School is really COOL!  I sat in on their meeting this week and would enjoy becoming a regular.  I have been an educator for 30 years and the Hingham students are excellent.  Assistant Principal Richard Swanson gives them some direction and they are buying in.

Here are the notes from the January meeting:

HHS Green Committee Meeting

January 13, 2014


Members Attending: Mrs. Black (Parent), Lea Concannon (Gr.10), Ms. Coughlin (Math Dept.), Mr. Doerr (History Dept.), Lily Fernald (Gr. 9), Natalie Gebhardt (Gr. 9), Max Giarrusso (Gr. 9), Gray Kinsella (Gr. 12), Mrs. McPhillips (Parent), Gianluca Nigro (Gr. 11), Ms. Perkins (Math Dept.),  Michael Saleski (Gr. 11), Mr. P. Swanson (Guest/Hingham Resident/Retired Teacher), Mr. R. Swanson (Admin.), Carson Terres (Gr. 11), Brendan Whitney (Gr. 12)  –  16 total.



  1. Slash the Trash update
  2. Do one thing project
  3. Green House update
  4. Green Week
  5. Green Club website
  6. Bulletin boards
  7. Updates


  1. 1.    Slash The Trash Update: So far we have had 3 teams participate (girls’ hockey, boys’ track, and swim). The results have been inconsistent this season.  We are thinking of providing an extra incentive for the captains if their team wins. We can give them a “green” parking space; this should motivate the captains to encourage their teams to participate.  Set a benchmark that teams will get rewarded for if they get below 15 points.  The reward could be access to a “green space” or something else.


  1. 2.    “Do One Thing” Initiative: We want to kick off the DOT project this Friday during lunches. There will be a table that STUCO and green club members will help to organize. This week on “The Friday Show” there will be a skit about the DOT project. Should we extend the DOT January to DOT 2014? We will probably continue the DOT until February vacation.  For Friday, Lea will get some green balloons to put in the cafeteria, and some people are making signs for the cafeteria.  Also, for this Friday Mr. Swanson might organize raffle tickets for a prize for people who have re-usable items (e.g., water bottles, lunch bags, etc.).  Our goal is to fill up all of the class numbers with the dots.  Gray is going to put up an H for the teachers to participate in as well. We decided not to give a prize to the winning grade, and we will save that money for something else.   We are going to make a list of simple ways people can make a difference. These ideas, suitable for the “DOTs” will be read in daily announcements.  Lea will draft these announcements. Also, Mike Saleski will make a poster for the cafeteria.


  1. 3.    Greenhouse update: The foundation is in and now we must wait for better weather so they can finish the greenhouse. There is only about a week and half left of work left; it is now just a waiting game for the right time. We hope to do a big grand opening during “Green Week.”


  1. 4.    Green Week:  Aquarion has offered to sponsor a guest performer, storyteller Jay O’Callahan, during “Green Week!”  People who take Oceanography or Environmental Science classes, along with those active with the Green Team, will be able to go see him as an in-school field trip.  We are going to open it up to all other classes, on a “first- come, first-served” basis, and then we can live stream it throughout the rest of the school for the people who cannot see in the auditorium.  Also, the meteorologist (and HHS alumnus) Michael Page is coming back to talk to everyone about climate change.  Start brainstorming some new ideas and themes that we could do during Green Week!  If you know of anyone who would be a good guest speaker, tell Mr.  Swanson ASAP, so he can book it now.


  1. 5.    Website: The HHS tech squad has generously offered to build us our very own website! We can put anything we want on it such as volunteer events, agendas, and our achievements.  We also thought it would be a good idea to do an online suggestion box for people to suggest new ideas for our club.  We could also put some of the statistics about our school’s energy usages. Maybe we could also have garden updates, online compost orders, and information about our composting area. We would need someone to be trained to keep it updated. Maybe a couple of people could trade off every month updating the website.


  1. 6.    Bulletin Boards: Some of our boards (including the “Slash the Trash” board in the cafeteria and the board in the 120’s hallway) need to be updated.  Gianluca has offered to update both boards for us.


  1. 7.    Other:  We all noticed that in the far lot and the path to the school the parking lights are on a lot during unnecessary times.  Hopefully there is a way to keep only half of the lights on during no busy times.  We are currently doing a trial run for green cleaning products in one of the custodial closets.   No complaints have been made about the new cleaning products. Maybe we should present the custodians with some facts on the bad cleaning products.  We also discussed the possibility of putting in some hand dryers in some of the high traffic bathrooms. Gray said he will look into the hand dryers again. The hand dryers are expensive but maybe we could write a grant for HEF, or ask the PTO if they could help pay for them.


Next Meeting:  Monday, February 10, 2014; 2:45 PM in the LMC Conference Room


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