SOURCE: San Francisco Waldorf School

September 17, 2007 08:00 ET

Waldorf Opens "Greenest" High School in Bay Area

Independent School Achieves Gold LEED Certification -- the First in the Bay Area

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwire - September 17, 2007) - San Francisco Waldorf School, an independent, co-educational, non-sectarian school today announced the grand opening of its new High School building which will be recognized with the Gold Standard by the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED). This marks the first school to achieve the Gold Standard in the Bay Area.

"This is a thrilling opportunity for our district to host San Francisco's first LEED Gold Certified 'Green' High School," said Sean R. Elsbernd, supervisor of District 7. "We are proud to support a school that teaches the critical importance of sustainable living to the citizens of our city's future."

The new school facility will house approximately 140 students and 30 faculty and staff, and is located in the heart of San Francisco at 470 West Portal. San Francisco Waldorf School is an N-12 school known for a curriculum which integrates students' developmental needs with intellectual and artistic skills. Students will now have the opportunity to learn in a high-performance green building and develop an understanding of how the next generation can leave a positive footprint on the environment.

"Respect for the environment and sustainability are long-standing tenets of the Waldorf curriculum," said Dave Alsop, head of administration at San Francisco Waldorf School. "Our kindergartners experience the natural work on their weekly hikes in the Presidio, our third graders spend a week working on a biodynamic farm and our high school students engage in a plethora of ecological based community-service projects."

Waldorf Green Building Features Include:

--  Energy efficient lighting system with occupancy sensors for automated
    shut off control of unoccupied spaces.  Daylight sensors and dimming
    ballasts control lighting to minimize energy output and maximize the use of
    natural daylight.
--  Water saving faucets, dual flush and low flow toilets and the use of
    drought tolerant native planting in landscaped areas, all of which reduce
    water use by 30% over conventional buildings.
--  A 99% high efficiency boiler used for space heating, which is coupled
    with the capacity to provide 100% outside air for ventilation and an energy
    economizer system.  Occupancy and CO2 sensors reduce air flow to unoccupied
    rooms and can deliver increased ventilation to rooms with high activity to
    provide healthy indoor air quality.
--  Replacement of non-operable windows with high performance wood windows
    for increased daylight, insulation and fresh air.
--  High recycled content and low emitting materials and finishes for
    healthy indoor environmental quality.
--  Rehabilitation of an existing building ideally suited for adaptive
    reuse as a high school, well served by public transportation.

"We are proud to have successfully met the criteria for Gold LEED Certification," said David Bushnell, principal architect at 450 Architects and Waldorf parent. "We hope the new San Francisco Waldorf High School will act as an example to other Bay Area Schools to develop an educational system that places a high value on eco-friendly best practices."

About San Francisco Waldorf School

San Francisco Waldorf School was founded in 1979 and today serves 450 students from nursery through high school. To serve the wider community, the school also provides early parenting and adult education programs. The grade school, serving K-8 students, opened its doors in 1979 and is located at 2938 Washington Street in San Francisco. San Francisco Waldorf High School was established in 1997, serves approximately 130 students and moved into its permanent LEED-Certified location at 470 West Portal in San Francisco in 2007. For more information visit

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