Jump to:

II P1.0 Integrated Design
II C1.1 Enhanced Integrated Design
II P2.0 Central Educational Display
II C2.1 School as a Learning Tool
II C3.1 District Level Commitment
II C4.1 School Master Plan & Enhanced Plans
II C5.1 Safer Schools by Design (formerly Crime Prevention through Environmental Design)
II C6.1 Low/Zero GHG Schools
II C7.1 Design for Adaptation & Resilience
II C8.1 Biophilic & Responsive Design
II C9.1 Innovation




II P1.0             REQUIREMENTS

Conduct a minimum of three integrated design team workshops that identify the project’s high performance goals, ensure the incorporation of all CHPS prerequisites, and target the appropriate CHPS credits and best practices as part of an ongoing programming and design decision-making process. The outcome shall be a plan, scorecard matrix, or checklist of how each prerequisite and credit will be implemented, the person(s) responsible, and a timeline of key deliverables or implementation procedures.

The first workshop must take place at the point at which the project team is making design decisions, and preferably in the programming or first conceptual or Schematic Design phase meeting.

The second workshop must occur sometime during the Design Development phase, prior to the mid-point (50%) of the construction documentation phase and should coordinate with the owner’s project requirements and any other district or project specific CHPS guidelines or environmental performance requirements. This integrated design workshop should include a quality check of the documents for high performance features and continued achievability of the earlier identified prerequisites and credits with an emphasis on maintenance and operational aspects of the building systems. School staff in charge of HVAC controls, maintenance, lighting, cleaning, landscaping, recycling, trash collection, and consumables purchasing are required to attend.

The third workshop must occur during the early part of construction, preferably in concert with the construction kick-off meeting, where all parties review the CHPS scorecard goals, schedule of deliverables, and expectations of respective responsible parties, especially contractors, school site and maintenance and operations staff. Discuss implementation issues and confirm continued achievability of design intent, CHPS scorecard prerequisites and targeted credits.

Set any remaining deadlines for respective CHPS design and construction review, prerequisites, and credit documentation to be uploaded to the CHPS project account in Basecamp.

For each workshop, attendees must include representatives of project team members under contract that have responsibility for a CHPS prerequisite or credit, such as:

  • Owner Representatives Group – owner’s project manager, facilities maintenance representative, district or school capital project staff, utility representative, commissioning agent, and any sustainability officer or green schools staff.
  • Design Consultants Group – architect, interior designers, engineers (mechanical, electrical, civil, and plumbing), food service, acoustic and energy consultants, lighting designer, landscape architect, and green building/CHPS consultant.
  • Construction Representatives Group – construction manager, general contractor, and major subcontractors. For projects that are Design-Bid-Build-Delivery, the contractor may not yet be under contract until the Construction Phase.
  • School Occupants Representatives Group – principal, teachers, special education representatives, students, parents, operations staff, and community members.




II C1.1            REQUIREMENTS

II C1.1.1            Energy Modeling Variations

During the Design Phase, perform at least three iterations or variations of whole building energy analysis and document how the models responded to synergistic issues raised during the first two CHPS workshops and/or Interim Design Phase to improve overall high performance (see Prerequisite above).


II C1.1.2                  Advanced Design Modeling

Utilize an advanced BIM decision-making tool for integrated sustainable design; whole building life cycle assessment (WBLCA); or environmental impact modeling tool such as Tally, Athena, One Click, or Skanska’s Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (EC3); or others that facilitate calculation of embodied and/or operating carbon emissions.


II C1.1.3            Cross-Category Workshops

During CHPS integrated design workshops, set aside time to specifically discuss design opportunities to improve multiple high performance outcomes by identifying criteria across categories (Materials & Waste, Indoor Environmental Quality, Site, Water, Energy) that contribute to the achievement of other category credits and/or design strategies that also promote human health, nutrition, or wellness.




II P2.0           REQUIREMENTS

Provide a permanent educational display, such as signage, kiosk, showcase, or digital device, in a central location on the school site that describes the high performance features that are part of the building and site.

The permanent educational display must be located in a prominent location at the school, such as the main lobby. The display shall include a list of all CHPS high performance features with a statement of the intent and an explanation of each feature. Visual aids or drawings may be used to illustrate features as needed.  If demonstration areas are established in II C2.1, the display shall include a map identifying their locations.




II C2.1            REQUIREMENTS

II C2.1.1            Demonstration Areas

Create at least two demonstration areas for any of the school’s high performance features on: indoor environmental quality, energy, water, site, materials & waste, or climate resilience. The demonstration areas are in addition to the central educational display.

Within the demonstration sites, at least one feature of a high performance category must be showcased. The demonstration area must explain how the high performance feature works, its environmental and economic benefits, and how it exemplifies a holistic and integrated approach to sustainable design.

II C2.1.2            Educational Integration/Environmental Curriculum

Create an educational plan, program, or activity that utilizes the school’s high performance features in teaching and learning to contribute to environmental awareness and/or eco-literacy. If the plan or program is obtained through a third party, it must address the school’s high performance features. Include a letter of commitment from the school principal, teacher(s), or governing board stating that the sustainability education will occur on a yearly basis. The educational program should consist of the following primary components:

  • Science, technology, environmental arts, or math (STEM/STEAM) hands-on learning that explores high performance design features.
  • A core group of learners, or CHPS Champions, who will be responsible for educational outreach within the school community. The number of CHPS Champions will vary from school to school but is preferably at least 2 students per grade.
  • Support staff, preferably 2, who will administer the program and mentor the CHPS Champions.

Educate entire student community (100% of student population) on high performance design. Each student should be exposed to at least one design feature, exposing them to level appropriate learning-outcome relevant information.

Educational integration should incorporate the central educational display and/or demonstration areas.

II C2.1.3            School Gardens

Provide a site on campus for one or more school gardens with a minimum of 200 ft2 for a student enrollment of 499 or fewer students, and a minimum of 500 ft2 for student enrollment equal to or greater than 500 students. At a minimum, the garden(s) must provide for learning about the social and environmental systems of the local natural systems and about healthy foods, in the case of an edible garden. The garden(s) shall have a permanent source of water through an irrigation system or by access to a tap and hose and/or access to a rain collection system. There must also be dedicated storage space for garden maintenance supplies and tools. Informal seating or gathering space for instruction within the garden or nearby is encouraged, but not required.

Provide signage to designate the area as a school garden and to differentiate it from the surrounding grounds. Develop a long-term ecologically sustainable operations and maintenance plan to ensure the garden is implemented and continues to thrive; update the plan as-needed.

For existing school sites (major renovations/modernizations or new building on existing campus project) the soil must be tested to ensure there are no harmful contaminants. New school sites are covered under SS P1.0 site requirements.




II C3.1            REQUIREMENTS

II C3.1.1            CHPS Membership & Construction Resolution

The administration must maintain an active CHPS membership and pass a board or trustee-level resolution that mandates compliance with CHPS Criteria across construction project types to formalize district-wide commitment to high performance schools, as follows:

Meet or exceed the CHPS qualifying threshold using the CHPS Criteria for:

  • New Schools
  • Major Renovation/Modernization Projects
  • New Buildings on an Existing Campus, including Non-Classroom Buildings
  • Additions to an Existing Building
  • Prefabricated/Modular Classrooms


II C3.1.2            Benchmarking Resolution

The governing board must pass a resolution that mandates annual monitoring of building performance (see OM C4.1 High Performance Operations) district-wide.




II C4.1            REQUIREMENTS

Create a written, actionable master plan with goals for continuous implementation and improvement of the high performance elements of the school over at least a 10 year period from occupancy/project completion. Enhanced plans contain goals for significant additional steps towards sustainability over the baseline performance of the building, such as zero net energy or zero waste. Enhanced plans should cover 50-80 years.

II C4.1.1            School Master Plan or Commitment to Complete Sustainable Plan

                          Do either of:

School Master Plan

The administration shall develop a school master plan for the site and facilities in collaboration with school board members and community stakeholders covering 10-15 years from occupancy that:

  • Supports continued compliance with high performance strategies followed in these Criteria.
  • Is consistent with the district-wide facilities master plan, if applicable.
  • Assesses and plans for future transportation impacts on the school and offers flexibility for alternative forms of transportation.
  • Assesses and plans for the possibility of increased or decreased student enrollment.
  • Assesses use of the school for emergency preparedness such as a shelter or for climate adaptation and resilience.
  • Assesses and plans for future high performance upgrades and renovations/modernizations by documenting:
  1. Life expectancy of major systems and materials.
  2. Opportunities for high performance replacement such as reuse or recycle.
  • Identifies current and future opportunities for pedestrian and bike connections to surrounding neighborhoods, community services, and bike paths.
  • Considers protecting outdoor spaces for school gardens, landscaping, permeable paving, and ideal solar orientation.


Commitment to Enhanced Plan

The administration shall make a written commitment to complete any one of the following sustainable/climate action plans (4.1.2-4.1.4), including the GHG Emissions Inventory. The commitment must include the timeframe for completion of the plan and identification of the responsible individuals.

II C4.1.2            ZNE School Master Plan

Exceed the school master plan above to create a zero net energy (ZNE or ZE) plan. The ZNE plan should address all of 4.1.1 as well as include goals and actions to achieve the following over time:

  • Zero net energy for the whole site/all buildings using the criteria in EE C1.1 Superior Energy Efficiency Design
  • Energy resiliency using the criteria in II C7.1 Design for Adaptation & Resilience or other criteria appropriate to the local climate and conditions

II C4.1.3            Sustainable School Master Plan

Exceed the above plans by doing all of 4.1.2 plus:

  • At least 40% water use reduction using strategies including but not limited to those in WE C2.1 & C3.1; “water neutral” or “zero water” goals are encouraged
  • Additional waste reduction measures beyond those in MW P1.0 and MW C1.1; “zero waste” is encouraged
  • Provide for ZEV/carpool preferred parking and electric vehicle charging facilities
  • Coordinate with district-wide sustainability planning, if applicable
  • Integrate education on all the above into curriculum

II C4.1.4            Sustainable School Climate Action Plan or Low/Zero Carbon School Master Plan

Do all of 4.1.3 plus either of:

Sustainable School Climate Action Plan

Develop and implement an administration-approved climate action plan that includes a goal for annual reporting of GHG emissions to raise awareness of the school communitys carbon footprint and engage students, staff, and the community in reducing the footprint. The plan must establish a baseline year, identify measures that will lead to reduction in GHG emissions by at least 25% from the baseline year within 10 years and 80% by 2050. The climate action plan shall address Scopes 1 and 2 emissions (see Implementation) at a minimum and may also include Scope 3 emissions.


Low/Zero Carbon School Master Plan

The Low/Zero Carbon plan is eligible for an additional point in II C8.1 Innovation.

Complete the Climate Action Plan above plus:

  • Commit to no fossil fuels used on-site for space heating, water heating, cooking, or other small process loads.
  • Address GHG emissions from transportation related to school district employee/teacher/student commute or pick-up/drop-off through performing a baseline survey and developing a plan for minimum 25% reduction by 2030 and 80% reduction by 2050.




II C5.1            REQUIREMENTS

Conduct a CPTED workshop with key project stakeholders and a CPTED professional at the outset of, or before, schematic design to identify site, building and interior issues, and define strategies aligned with CPTED principles for addressing them in a CPTED Plan. Key project stakeholders must include representatives of the designers, users, students, community members, and emergency responders.

The CPTED Plan must articulate strategies categorized by CPTED Principles.

The design team must incorporate these strategies in the project design. The CPTED professional shall review the design prior to construction and provide comments as necessary to align the design with CPTED Principles.




II C6.1            REQUIREMENTS

II C6.1.1            Energy Efficient, All-Electric

Design a highly efficient, all-electric building using one of the following options:

  1. Passive House approach;
  2. Achieve a minimum of 35% savings beyond ASHRAE 90.1-2016; or
  3. Achieve a site-based Energy Use Intensity (EUI) of less than 30 kBtu/sf/yr.

II C6.1.2            100% Renewable Energy

Achieve the zero net energy level in EE C1.1 where on-site renewable energy systems produce as much energy on an annual basis as is used by the sum of all the building systems;


100% of purchased electricity to power the building, whether through the local grid, a Community Choice Aggregator (CCA), or through a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA), is from 100% renewable sources.

II C6.1.3            Low Embodied Carbon Materials

Select low carbon structural and other major materials through an assessment of embodied carbon using whole-building life-cycle assessment (WBLCA) or other appropriate calculator. [prescriptive list was removed 12/10/2020; new methodology to come]

II C6.1.4            Environmentally Preferable Refrigerants

Use no CFC-based refrigerants in building heating, ventilating, air conditioning, & refrigeration (HVAC&R) systems.

HCFC refrigerants are permitted only in new equipment up to 2020, (if not subject to a more stringent local code) if both the global warming potential (GWP) is less than 150 (based on a 100 year time horizon) and the ozone depletion potential (ODP) is less than or equal to 0.02.

HFC refrigerants are allowed and preference should be given to specifying HVAC, refrigeration, and water heating equipment that utilizes low GWP refrigerants, including carbon dioxide (CO2) refrigerant.



APPLICABILITY: All projects. For renovations/major modernizations, see Implementation for details.

II C7.1             REQUIREMENTS

II C7.1.1            Climate Vulnerability Assessment

If no recent climate risk assessment exists for the site, conduct an assessment of the location’s vulnerability to significant weather events. Assume at least 60-100 years of service life for the building shell, foundation, and other major structural components. Use the most recent and most localized (local, regional, and/or state, and/or national) climate change vulnerability assessments, maps, and/or adaptation plans to assess the magnitude and likelihood of climate change hazards at the school site and district wide, if applicable. Consider potential hazards such as, extreme heat event/overheating, wildfires, power outages, extreme drought/water shortage, air pollution, extreme wind, sea level rise, winter storms, tornadoes, and episodic flooding or storm surge. State and federal (USGCRP, EPA, NOAA, or DOE) online resources, databases, or tools may be utilized, if no local climate risk assessments have been done recently.

Identify the top one to two hazards from the vulnerability assessment above based on the likelihood and potential magnitude of impacts on human health and safety and on economic impacts. For the top hazard(s), identify potential actions, design strategies, and opportunities to adapt the school building project, site, and district design standards (if applicable), operational policies, and school site activities and address future emergency events and climate conditions. Outreach and partnering with the local community, state, and regional agencies is highly recommended.

II C7.1.2            Design for Climate Adaptation

Design the building to meet the EE C1.1 criteria for zero energy and:

For the top hazards identified above, incorporate all feasible adaptation measures in the project design. Assess the feasibility, scheduling, and cost-effectiveness of the measures. Evaluate the potential benefits in terms of energy, water, and cost savings, disruption of service and other cost avoidance, improved staff and student performance, health, and safety, and reduced liability. Seek to identify and leverage other community benefits, both short and long term.

If integration of climate adaptation measures is not feasible under the current project budget or other constraints, provide the school administration with a recommendation for how to assess and implement the measures in the future, such as by designing and preparing construction alternates. Phasing the measures in over time is allowed if necessary, but plan for any necessary infrastructure or preparations in the initial construction phase, e.g., brackets for external shades, substructure for green roofs, and electrical transformer/panel/wiring for more electrification, PV panels, internet of things, EV charging, and microgrids. These recommendations can be used in the plan in II C4.1 School Master Plan.

II C7.1.3            Energy Resilience

Meet the criteria for zero net energy in EE C1.1. and design the building to meet at least two of the following measures for 1 point or all four measures for 2 points:

  1. No less than 75% of the floor area is located within a daylit zone as defined by the IECC-2015, ASHRAE 90.1-2016 or the Spatial Daylight Autonomy methodology.
  2. No less than 75% of the floor area is located in a space provided with an operable fenestration area to the exterior of at least 5% of the floor area of the space. Operable fenestration area shall be capable of manual operation.
  3. All power systems are divided into primary/critical and secondary/non-critical sub-systems so that no more than 50% of the building loads are on the primary subsystem and the secondary sub-system can be disconnected from energy sources.
  4. It contains an on-site energy storage system sized to serve the loads on the primary subsystem for no less than 4 days without any interaction with energy supply infrastructures such as the electricity grid or is connected to renewable backup power with the same capacity. A microgrid or renewable district energy system is acceptable for this criterion.

Critical energy systems such as HVAC equipment, energy distribution systems for the primary energy sub-system, onsite renewable energy systems and energy storage systems are built and located to protect them from the most likely disturbances or natural disasters. For example, in tornado-prone areas, these systems would be built in accordance with, or located in portions of the building built in accordance with, tornado-resistant standards. Or in flood-prone areas, these systems would be located above the flood level. In areas prone to high wind, especially tornadoes and hurricanes, it is especially important that onsite renewable systems be built to withstand high wind loads.

Include the systems in training and O&M Manual in OM P1.0 and in the Systems Maintenance Manual in OM C4.1, if applicable.

II C7.1.4            Passive Habitability/Survivability

If/when the school/district establishes readiness for emergencies by working with the Red Cross or other local lead agency, then comply with the criteria below. It is not required that the school achieve formal designation as an emergency shelter.

  • Using dynamic thermal modeling such as EnergyPlus or Passive House certification, design and construct the facility, first maximizing energy efficiency and passive strategies, with 100% renewable energy systems including energy storage that can safely support the maximum occupancy for a 4-day power outage, at minimum.
  • Meet the energy storage/backup power criterion in 7.1.3 to cover critical services such as access to sanitation facilities, potable water, refrigeration of medicines and food, cooking, charging of cell phones and other essential communication and electronic devices, shade/cooling and fresh air/exhaust fans, and perhaps portable air cleaners, as well as others identified in the vulnerability assessment above.
  • Take additional measures as needed if the quality of potable water may also be affected, such as having backup filtration or a backup source. Coordinate with lead public agencies and plan with local community around other needs such as food supplies.
  • Include details on all passive features in the O&M Manual in OM P1.0 and in the Systems Maintenance Plan in OM C4.1. Provide a brief User’s Guide to designated emergency personnel on the operation of the features.




II C8.1            REQUIREMENTS

II C8.1.1            Biophilic Design

Incorporate a minimum of six biophilic features, with at least two elements in each of the three categories: Nature in the Space (physically experiencing nature), Nature of the Space (spatial configurations), Natural Analogues (nature-inspired elements).

II C8.1.2            Responsive Design

Provide a minimum of two interior or exterior features that create safe and calming spaces, provide sensory input, or contribute to a sense of community. Features may include the sites’ cultural, spiritual, archeological, or architectural history.

II C8.1.3            Educational Curriculum Integration

Provide educational materials for students and teachers that document the successful biophilic and responsive design strategies in C8.1.1 or C8.1.2. These could include but not be limited to signage indicating the benefits of a biophilic element, or a user guide highlighting the biophilic patterns included in the building, or a curriculum that further explores a responsive feature.



APPLICABILITY: All projects, does not apply to CHPS Designed recognition

II C9.1            REQUIREMENTS

Implement new technologies or strategies that do at least one of the following not currently offered in the CHPS rating program:

  • Improves the health and performance of students and staff.
  • Improves the performance and efficiency of school facilities, or operation of those facilities.
  • Improves the natural environment and/or addresses GHG reductions.


Demonstrate exceptional performance in an existing criterion area through submission of a narrative explaining how the intent was exceeded by a significant amount.