Green Schools National Network (GSNN) is joining forces with Benecras, LLC, a sustainability services firm, to deepen its work in supporting sustainable school operations. On July 1, 2021, GSNN signed an asset purchase agreement with Benecras to acquire the firm’s assets that support K-12 schools and districts in the areas of campus operations, resource efficiency, and data management. These tools will be used to support and expand services provided to GSNN’s growing network of 300+ schools around the country.
The acquisition comes as GSNN undergoes a major rebranding initiative to reflect its continued evolution in shaping healthy, equitable, and sustainable schools. Part of this rebranding effort involved updating its GreenPrint, a framework for whole school transformation that promotes best practices in four key impact systems: leadership, curriculum and instruction, culture and climate, and facilities and operations.
Tools and Expertise to Measure and Track Operational Sustainability
Benecras and its founder, Zac Ziebarth, bring to the table a deep understanding of what it takes to create, measure, and operate sustainable facilities and learning environments. Launched in 2016, Benecras was formed to support and guide organizations in their quest to adopt sustainable business and organizational practices. Over the past five years, Benecras has supported a wide range of organizations, from K-12 schools and districts to those in the restaurant industry, in the areas of operational sustainability and facilities data management.
Over the past year, Benecras has worked with GSNN and several of its partner schools and districts, including Environmental Charter Schools, Middleton-Cross Plains School District, and Boulder Valley School District, to provide a framework they can use to measure and track operational sustainability. The core tools used in this work, which GSNN has acquired, include the Insight Report and Sustainability Operations Dashboard. These tools provide a baseline that GSNN can use to measure and identify opportunities for its partner schools and districts.
Data Collection will Enhance Sustainability Storytelling
The tools and expertise that Benecras brings to the table will enable GSNN to expand its knowledge and work in the GreenPrint’s fourth impact system, facilities and operations. Further, the data GSNN collects will be critical to telling the stories of partner schools and districts as they navigate the challenges and successes of implementing whole school sustainability practices.
“The acquisition of Benecras addresses a need that we have identified over the past few years, and that is to provide deeper support to our partner schools and districts in their efforts to steward financial and ecological resources in tandem,” says GSNN Executive Director, Jennifer Seydel. “With Zac Ziebarth working with GSNN, we can better support schools in all four of our GreenPrint Impact systems.”