A Commitment to the environment
From its founding, Potomac recognized that nature is the most eloquent teacher. The school's mission, curriculum, and the very design of its buildings, old and new, reflect the importance Potomac places on students' contact with nature.
Stewardship, Sustainability, and Outdoor Education.
To continue Potomac's commitment to the diverse natural benefits of our 90-acre campus, Potomac created an office of Stewardship, Sustainability, and Outdoor Education. As a K-12 school situated on one campus, Potomac is uniquely poised to lead the kind of environmental consciousness that links the joy one experiences in nature with the imperative of stewardship.
Learning sound environmental practices beginning in kindergarten, students will develop habits of thinking and living that sustain them in their environment.
- Encouraging the purposeful use of campus by teachers and students
- Developing and implementing innovative environmental and stewardship strategies
- Providing information and resources pertaining to environmental best practices in a K-12 community
- Coordinating efforts to integrate new comprehensive environmental and stewardship initiatives into our curricula
Upper School and Middle School students cultivate organic herbs and vegetables throughout the year in eight raised beds located behind the Upper School. The gardening program is developing into an integral part of the School's K-12 stewardship mission by helping to educate K-12 students in organic gardening practices and nutritional eating habits. Future goals also include a "garden to cafeteria" program and a monthly Potomac School farmer's market.
Our Transportation Fleet
The Potomac School has one of the most comprehensive bus transportation systems in the Washington metro area. We are powered by biodiesel (B20 soy) fuel, which is delivered to a 3000-gallon tank on campus. Our 37 biodiesel buses also use an additive called ethos that burns the fuel more efficiently, reducing tailpipe emissions by 10 to 12 percent. We recycle all fluids, oil and transmission filters, and batteries, and we use biodegradable solvents in our parts washers.
All of our students in grades 1 through 11 are required to take the bus to and from school, reducing our traffic to a maximum of 2,080 vehicle trips in or out of the campus each day. That’s pretty good for a school of just over 1,000 students with a robust calendar of after-school sports, music, drama and other activities. We have Neighborhood Bus Service as well as conveniently located Shuttle Bus Service, throughout northern Virginia, DC and Maryland. Our bus system reduces traffic in the surrounding neighborhoods as well as serious air pollutants such as carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons and particulate matter on our campus.