SOURCE: Santa Barbara Middle School

December 31, 2007 12:44 ET

Santa Barbara Middle School Gets Early Start to Their New Year's Resolution

Santa Barbara Middle School's Green Philosophy Creates Confident and Educated Young Adults

SANTA BARBARA, CA--(Marketwire - December 31, 2007) - While it seems as though many of us wait until January 1st to begin changing and improving our daily lives and helping those around us, there are many local students who are taking action to improve the environment all year round. Santa Barbara Middle School, a co-ed independent school for sixth to ninth grade students, continually promotes highly-effective values that encourage global responsibility. These students learn through a successful experiential curriculum that emphasizes recycling, sustainable resources, and other important values that are vital to the health of our planet.

Hands-on learning, or experiential learning, in classroom and outdoor settings is an innovative approach to education. Gillian Christie, mother of a Santa Barbara Middle School alum, explains, "As a parent and business owner on the forefront of the green movement, Santa Barbara Middle School is the ideal environment for children to actively learn about their world and gain confidence for the future." The school is well-known for its mountain biking, kayaking, and backpacking trips, bringing students together on 7 to 14-day long educational journeys in the Santa Barbara wilderness, the Grand Canyon/Four Corners region, and Oregon's Cascade Mountains. These outdoor learning experiences pave the way for a more environmentally-confident next generation of leaders.

SBMS' students often take initiative in projects related to health and sustainability. Former Santa Barbara Middle School student Theo Tiffney, who advocates using the local public bus system as a way to reduce greenhouse gases, was recently asked to participate in a MTD ad campaign designed to increase teen "ridership." SBMS alumnus and current UC Berkeley student Jacob Seigel Boettner works with the international non-profit Project Rwanda and organized a group of SBMS alums who traveled to Rwanda to build bicycles and teach bicycle mechanics to the country's bicycle-dependent coffee farmers.

The school's environmental and community involvement also enriches each student's awareness of their roles as local and global citizens. Recently Santa Barbara Middle School's students raised money for an orphanage in Mexico, all while taking care of its own community in Santa Barbara. Volunteering over 5,000 hours of community service per year, students enhance their education both inside and outside the classroom.

The impressive challenges in which the students of Santa Barbara Middle School partake build a confident, knowledgeable, and globally-aware student body that is more prepared for higher education and global changes in our community.

Santa Barbara Middle School is the only stand-alone co-ed accredited middle school in California, and is accredited by the California Association of Independent Schools and Association of Experiential Education. It is located at 2300 A Garden Street in Santa Barbara, California. Please see for more information, or call (805) 682-2989.

Contact Information

  • Media contact:
    Alissa Sears
    Christie Communications
    Email Contact