Green Schools National Network

The Green Schools National Network (GSNN) has initiated a communication initiative to reach all school superintendents, school principals, school business officers, and school teachers across the nation within the next year and sustain communication with them through social media, monthly newsletters, and a quarterly journal.  To support this effort, GSNN is seeking original content for the following:

Click the links above to learn more about publication-specific writing guidelines and submission information.

All authors should adhere to these General Guidelines:

General Guidelines for GSNN Authors

Who We Are

The Green Schools National Network (GSNN) works with educators, government and non-governmental organizations and agencies, as well as private partners to create broad-based initiatives and successful strategies aimed at fostering healthy, sustainable K-12 schools across the United States. Founded by principals, superintendents, and teachers, GSNN is devoted to accelerating student achievement through the implementation of green, healthy and sustainable practices as outlined in our GreenPrint® for Green, Healthy, and Sustainable Schools.


GSNN provides K-12 teachers, administrators, leaders, and professionals with evidence-based resources and tools to maximize financial and natural resources; improve the health and well-being of staff and students; and prepare student with the knowledge and skills for a sustainable future.


Target Audience

GSNN’s audience consists of K-12 teachers, school administrators, facilities staff, green schools advocates, and partners in the business and nonprofit sectors who are invested in the green schools movement.



GSNN is looking for content that is informative and grounded in quantitative and qualitative evidence.  We will prioritize case studies, stories that are embedded in best practices, and other articles that demonstrate impact on one specific pillar or multiple pillars of a green, healthy, sustainable school (decreasing the environmental footprint of schools and school districts; health and well-being; and curriculum that advances environmental and sustainability literacy).  Preference will be given to content that has a professional, yet relaxed tone that addresses topics in a way that appeals to, and can be understood by, a wide range of audiences.


Do Not Send

GSNN will not publish articles that have a political bias, endorsements of specific products and services, and rants or inflammatory opinion pieces.  GSNN has the authority to reject articles it deems inappropriate for publication.


Be Transparent

GSNN values honesty from its writers in order to produce credible content grounded in best practices.    If you are in any way connected to a story you are writing, please disclose this information upfront for the reader.  This includes revealing any material relationships (e.g., the subject is an employer or employee).



GSNN prioritizes content that is written exclusively for the Network’s publications.  You are more than welcome to promote the content on your website and on social media, just as long as you link back to GSNN.



The publication of articles that tell the story and provide information about research and practice in the green schools movement is an essential building block in the development of a coherent and respected network of knowledge. It is a direct reflection of the quality of work of the author, the institutions that support him or her, and the Green Schools National Network.

Authorship of the Paper

Authorship should be limited to those who have made a significant contribution to the conception, design, execution, or interpretation of the study or topic.

Originality and Plagiarism

The author should ensure that he or she has written entirely original works, and if the author has used the work and/or words of others, that this has been appropriately cited or quoted.

Multiple, Redundant, or Concurrent Publication

An author should not publish an exact manuscript via GSNN.  We will consider, however, a modified version on the same research or topic if it is relevant to our audience.

Acknowledgement of Sources

Proper acknowledgment of sources is required for publication.

Disclosure and Conflicts of Interest

All submissions must include disclosure of all relationships that could be viewed as presenting a potential conflict of interest.

Fundamental Errors in Published Works

When an author discovers a significant error or inaccuracy in his or her own published work, it is the author’s obligation to promptly notify the journal editor or publisher and cooperate with the editor to retract or correct the paper.

Reporting Standards

Authors of reports of original research should present an accurate account of the work performed as well as an objective discussion of its significance.

Green Schools National Network Blog

Blog posts should address one or more of the themes based on the core practices found in the GSNN GreenPrint.  A list of these themes can be found here: https://greenschoolsnationalnetwork.org/green-print.


Additional blog guidelines:

  • Blogs should be between 500 – 800 words in length.
  • Include a headline/title.
  • Narrative or essay in first or third person perspective.
  • 1-2 sentence bio for each of the authors.
  • Include live links to related/supporting material and/or suggest resources or tools of interest.
  • A minimum of 1 photo is required.
    • Images must be a minimum of 1200 pixels wide.
    • Include the source of the image so credit can be assigned.
    • Please do not embed images in the body of the document.


Submission guidelines for blog posts:

  • Submit blog posts in MS Word.  Documents should be single spaced and in an 11-point font.  Avoid extra formatting.
  • When submitting, include your name, title, organization, and contact email and phone number.
  • Email draft blog posts for consideration to Cyndy Merse at cmerse@greenschoolsnationalnetwork.com.  Include “Write for GSNN: Blog” in the subject line, along with your intended topic (e.g., “farm to school” or “place-based learning”).


GreenNotes Monthly Newsletter

GSNN’s newsletter, GreenNotes, focuses on one overarching topic per month.  We will consider articles for the month that best matches the topic.  A list of upcoming themes can be found below.  Have a question about an upcoming theme?  Contact cmerse@greenschoolsnationalnetwork.com.


We are looking for a variety of articles for GreenNotes, including:

  • Case studies of schools and school districts doing exemplary work in environmental and sustainability initiatives.
  • Profiles of leaders and advocates in the green schools movement.
  • News and current events of interest to the green schools movement.


Additional GreenNotes guidelines:

  • Articles should be between 1000 – 1500 words in length.
  • Articles should address  one or more of the following:
    • best practices;
    • lessons learned;
    • benefits to students and/or teachers;
    • tools/resources (as appropriate); and
    • examples/case studies of real-world applications.
  • Include a headline/title.
  • Include quotes from educators when possible.
  • Use of APA style citations in articles is preferable over footnotes
  • A minimum of 1 photo is required to accompany the story.
    • Images must be a minimum of 1200 pixels wide.
    • Include the source of the image so credit can be assigned.
    • Please do not embed images in the body of the document.
  • Include a one paragraph bio(s) (approximately 100 words) for the contributing author(s) to accompany the story.
  • Preference will be given to articles that include live links to related/supporting material and/or suggest resources or tools of interest.


Submission guidelines for GreenNotes articles:

  • Submit articles in MS Word.  Documents should be single spaced and in an 11-point font.  Avoid extra formatting.
  • When submitting, include your name, title, organization, and contact email and phone number.
  • Email draft articles for consideration to Cyndy Merse at cmerse@greenschoolsnationalnetwork.com.  Include “Write for GSNN: GreenNotes” in the subject line, along with your intended topic (e.g., “farm to school” or “place-based learning”).


Upcoming GreenNotes Themes 

Farm to School — October 2017

Submission deadline: September 22, 2017

Farm to school programs are about much more than ensuring students have access to fresh, healthy food during the school day. They provide rich educational opportunities through interdisciplinary curriculum, incorporating hands-on science and math lessons in school gardens; food science and chemistry lessons in the school kitchen; field work with local farmers; and learning about the history, politics, and economics of agriculture. This issue of GreenNotes will highlight some of the innovative farm to school programs being implemented in schools across the country, as well as nonprofit programs that are supporting and encouraging these efforts.


Creating a Culture of Sustainability in K-12 Education — November 2017

Submission deadline: November 3, 2017

A child will spend up to 15,000 hours in school from the day she begins kindergarten to the day she graduates. While it is important for her to graduate with the knowledge and skills necessary for college, It is just as important for her to graduate with a strong social and emotional foundation. Education for sustainability influences the culture of a school and school district, and has the potential to influence how a child thinks and feels about her role in co-creating a sustainable future. This issue of GreenNotes will explore how a culture of sustainability influences today’s students to be tomorrow’s environmentally-conscious, sustainability natives.


Catalyst —– December —Policy


Going Green to Save Green — January 2018

Submission deadline: December 29, 2017

Adopting a sustainability mindset is not just about zero waste and eco-literacy, but extends to how schools procure goods and services. Investing in sustainable products and services can help schools create healthier learning environments by removing toxic chemicals and reducing consumption of resources. This issue of GreenNotes profiles schools and school districts that are using sustainable purchasing. We will highlight lessons learned and best practices you can adopt to make smarter, greener purchasing decisions at your school. You may even save some green too!


Net Zero: Waste and Energy — February 2018

Submission deadline: February 2, 2017

According to the EPA, Net Zero means consuming only as much energy as is produced, achieving a sustainable balance between water availability and demand, and eliminating solid waste sent to landfills. Net zero can seem like an ambitious goal, but schools and school districts across the U.S. are adopting practices to make this goal a reality. This issue of GreenNotes will introduce you to some of those schools and school districts, highlight their best practices and lessons learned, and explore the latest trends in reducing energy use, conserving water, and eliminating waste.


Catalyst —- March—–Net Zero


Green Schools and the Community — April 2018

Submission deadline: March 30, 2018

Schools are widely recognized as centers of their communities, places where people gather to learn, celebrate, and take shelter in times of crisis. More and more, schools are adopting the mantle of climate resiliency, preparing students for the social, environmental, and economic challenges of the 21st century. In this issue of GreenNotes, you will meet some of the schools and school districts who are on the leading edge of this movement, and learn how their leadership and curriculum are having an impact on their communities.