Scholastic Kids Press Corps
The Scholastic Kids Press Corps is a team of about 50 Kid Reporters around the nation.  The interactive site brings daily news to life with reporting for kids, by kids.

My Town is Going Green

Kid Reporter gets a sneak peek of his new school

By John Foran | null null , null
Kid Reporter John Foran looks at plans of the new school with principal Bill Laffey. (Photo: Courtesy of John Foran)
Kid Reporter John Foran looks at plans of the new school with principal Bill Laffey. (Photo: Courtesy of John Foran)

My town, Radnor, a suburb of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, is almost finished with our new middle school. I recently got a sneak preview of what I can expect this fall as an incoming sixth-grader.

Our new school is a "green building." This is truly the wave of the future. I toured the building with Bill Laffey, the principal, and he explained to me just what being green means. A green design can reduce energy use and maximize the use of sustainable materials. Sustainable means that the materials used will last a really long time.

A green building also improves the health, motivation, and production of all the kids! In fact, according to a U.S. Green Building and American Federation of Teachers study, green buildings can improve student academic performance—how cool is that?

Here are few of the things they are designing with kids and the earth in mind:

-waterless urinals in the boys' room

-automatic light shutoffs in the classrooms

-special, less toxic paints

-artificial lighting that is similar to natural light

-a ventilation system to improve air quality

-a vegetated roof that can absorb rainwater

artist rendering
An artist rendering of what Radnor Middle School will look like in September 2007. (Photo: Courtsey of Radnor Middle School)

In order to be considered green, the planners need to meet some pretty strict requirements. For example, they have to be sure to recycle 75 percent of all waste produced during the construction process.

The old middle school building also needs to be demolished, or knocked down, correctly. This includes making sure that the asbestos—a poisonous chemical used in paint a long time ago—is destroyed properly. They also are going to recycle many of the structural pieces from the old middle school.

It was interesting to learn so much about construction and just how much effort goes into making sure this building will last over 100 years, so even my grandchildren will be able to attend this school. The new school will cost almost 45 million dollars—but I think we're worth every penny.

This school will be for sixth-, seventh-, and eighth-graders—almost 1,000 of us. It will open in September 2007.


Celebrate Earth Day with Scholastic News Online! Learn more about how you can help take care of our planet in this special report.


About the Author

John Foran is a member of the Scholastic Kids Press Corps.

  • Teacher Store
  • The Teacher Store  
    Guided Reading Lecturas Cortas Level Y

    Guided Reading Lecturas Cortas Level Y

    Available August 2015!

    The all-new Guided Reading Short Reads brings the same high-quality nonfiction of the original Guided Reading Short Reads to both Spanish and English-speaking learners. Access to short informational texts builds vocabulary acquisition and content area knowledge for all students, providing rich support for students who are learning Spanish, and building confidence in Spanish-speaking learners that they will carry over to their English instruction.

    NEW! Guided Reading Lecturas Cortas:
    •Fits seamlessly into classroom guided reading groups
    •Teaches strategies for decoding and comprehending complex texts
    •Builds rich domain-specific vocabulary across content areas
    •Engages students with thematically linked passages across text types
    •Provides sufficiently complex, short informational texts worthy of being read, reread, and analyzed

    Each level includes:
    •10 Student Informational Text Cards, 6 copies each
    •1 Teaching Guide
    •Magazine-style storage box

    Visit the Scholastic Guided Reading Program website for more information.

    $129.00 You save: 25%
    Supplementary Collection | Grade 6
    Add To Cart
    Educators Only
    Guided Reading Lecturas Cortas Level Y
    Grade 6 $129.00
    Add To Cart
  • Teacher Store
  • The Teacher Store  
    Scholastic Trio Individual Theme Unit Set 6, Science - Wildlife Conservation, Grades 6-7

    Scholastic Trio Individual Theme Unit Set 6, Science - Wildlife Conservation, Grades 6-7

    Visit the Scholastic TRIO website for more information.

    Scholastic Trio is a series of themed reading collections that engage students at THREE levels of reading ability - Below, On, and Above - all in the SAME content-area topic. Now your whole class can participate in learning about a single science, social studies, or language arts topic as they develop strategic reading skills!


    • ALIGNED TO STANDARDS: Themes meet critical social studies, science and language arts standards for each grade.
    • FULLY LEVELED: Each book is scored by LexileŽ and Guided Reading levels so you can match every student to a "just right" book.
    • ENGAGING: Authentic literature on high interest topics is included - classics, award-winners, and well-known authors.
    • EASY: Step-by-step teaching materials virtually eliminate prep time, making it a great time saver for busy teachers!
    • VERSATILE: Reproducible activities help you meet classroom accountability requirements and extend learning to the home

    Each individual theme unit includes a Below, On and Above level book (6 copies of each) plus teaching materials.

    $159.00 You save: 25%
    Paperback Book Collection | Grades 6-7
    Add To Cart
    Educators Only
    Scholastic Trio Individual Theme Unit Set 6, Science - Wildlife Conservation, Grades 6-7
    Grades 6-7 $159.00
    Add To Cart
Privacy Policy




Here's something interesting from