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Breathing Fresh Air Into The School Grading Debate

Copyright Francis P. Koster Ed.D.

I know how to make sure local school kids score higher on statewide ranking tests - you do it by letting the students breathe clean air.

The quality of indoor air has been identified by the Environmental Protection Agency as one of the top five most urgent environmental risks to public health.[1] Nearly half of all school buildings have unhealthy levels of indoor air pollution, according to the EPA.[2] Dirty air in schools lowers academic performance. [3]

One Michigan study found that middle schools located in areas with high air pollution had twice the failure rate on statewide standardized tests compared to schools located in areas with low air pollutio…

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Plastic Microbeads In Toothpaste

 By Francis P. Koster, Ed.D.

If you buy Crest toothpaste, it has little plastic pieces in it - put there on purpose. 

Really.

It even tells you on the label.  Go to the little “inactive ingredients” text on the side of the box, and you will find the word “polyethylene”.  

About 18 months ago, the general public began to be aware of this when dentists and dental hygienists found little pieces of plastic stuck in patients infected or swollen gums.  The original concern was that the plastic bits were causing harm to patients.  Since that time, a bigger concern has begun emerging.

After brushing your teeth, once you rinse your mouth, those little plastic bits go down the drain,…

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An Electrifying Idea - Community Solar Gardens

by Francis P. Koster, Ed.D.

One of my favorite statements by a corporate leader goes something like this: “If change outside of your organization is happening faster than change on the inside, the end is near.”  (Jack Welch, former CEO of General Electric).  This is happening to a lot of organizations that provide you energy.  

In August of 2015, the average American home spent around $1,100 per year on electricity. [1] About two-thirds of that comes from very polluting and climate-changing coal and natural gas.[2]  Things are ”heating up,” as you may have noticed. Heading off trouble is going to require a lot of effort and expense to eliminate the greenhouse gas and p…

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The Personal Moral Issue Around Climate Change

by Francis P. Koster, Ed.D

We have two decades to save life on earth as we know it - and I am not kidding[i].

About 150 years ago we unknowingly started making gasses that are coming back to hurt us. They came from the carbon-based fuels - coal, oil, and natural gas. We have been rapidly increasing production of these gasses every year since the late 1800s. [ii]These gasses float up, and over decades create the equivalent of an oven around our collective living quarters - our earth. [iii]

The cooking has started.

A quick recap: We just finished the warmest 6 months on record for the entire globe.[iv] The August 2015 sea surface temperature was the highest for any month in the ex…

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