Now that you have started taking action on your project, it’s time to write a press release to spread the word!
What is a Press Release?
A press release is an official statement delivered to a media source (such has a newspaper or TV station) for the purpose of providing information and sharing something newsworthy.
Writing a press release is a great way to further your project’s impact by sharing your message with the community.
Depending on your project, you can deliver your press release to a local media source like a community newspaper/newsletter. Furthermore, you can also submit your press release to your district or school’s newspaper/publication.
A press release is made up of 5 parts
Part 1 – Title
Describe your project and include info about your team.
Part 2 – Paragraph 1
- Write your “Dateline”- your location and the date. Example: “LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 5, 2021.”
- Introduce the Grades of Green Project you or your school is implementing and briefly answer who, what, where, when and why for your project?
- Start with what is newsworthy about this Grades of Green Project.
(Is there going to be a big impact or a lot of people involved? Is it the first green action at your school? Is it new to your community? Did you meet your goal?)
- Include your call-to-action from Phase 1.3
A group of intrepid students at Manhattan Beach Middle School (MBMS) will be asking the Manhattan Beach Unified School District (MBUSD) School Board to keep its campuses plastic-bottle-free during the upcoming school board meeting, to be held on March 4, 2020. If the school board adopts the students’ proposal, MBUSD could be the first in the nation to completely ban the distribution of single-use plastic bottles on campus. The MBMS students are seeking the public’s support for the plastic bottle ban, which can be done by submitting a comment at www.mbusd.com/publiccomment.
Part 3 – Paragraph 2
- Describe yourself, your school and/or team and why this Grades of Green Project is important to you!
- Give any additional, helpful information about your project or event. How should someone register to participate? Where is your Grades of Green Project being held?
- Quotes from You: Include a quote about why your project is important to you, your community, and the environment!
These students have chosen to advocate for this important change as part of their participation in Grades of Green’s Climate Solutions Campaign program, which is designed to empower students with the leadership skills and support they need to turn their environmental dreams for their community into reality. This is the fourth campaign that MBMS students have participated in with Grades of Green. Past projects have included a Meatless Monday campaign, a school garden program and the upcycling of old t-shirts into tote bags.
“We’re now asking the district to phase out the sale of plastic bottles at our campuses,” said Lila M. a seventh-grader at Manhattan Beach Middle School. “Also, we want to make it a policy that if any special events are held at our campuses, that they are not allowed to give out or sell plastic bottles.”
The public can attend this meeting virtually to see the student’s presentation by registering at www.mbusd.org/boardmeeting/register.
Part 4 – Paragraph 3
- Give details on the project’s impacts and activities including how the team will start the project.
- If you’re working with other organizations or partners, describe how they are involved.
- Quotes from others: Consider including a quote from someone else at the school like a principal, your teacher, or Team Facilitator about why they’re proud of what you’re doing. You can ask them to write one.
- Are there any other organizations or partners you are working with? Describe how you’re working together.
To support their proposal, the students will present their research on the environmental and public health impact of single-use plastic to the school board. A ban on plastic water bottles would not only prohibit their sales on campus but would also include a district-wide educational campaign that the MBMS students would help roll out.
“These students have already made a difference because many of them came to our board meeting last year and started us on this path,” said Dr. Michael Matthews, MBUSD Superintendent. “Our school district leads the nation in environmental action, and I love that these students continue to push us to do more.”
The City of Manhattan Beach and MBUSD have a long history of leading the nation in environmental action, in part due to the consistent advocacy of Grades of Green’s passionate students.
Part 5 – Paragraph 4
- Include some statistics on the environmental benefits of your Grades of Green Project: how much waste, water, energy, toxins, or air pollution is being reduced etc.
- Optional additions to include in your release:
- Are there other ways your audience can get involved or is there any other information you want to share?
- What is the future for this Grades of Green Project at your school?
- How will your work continue in the coming years?
The purpose of this ban would be to drastically reduce the school’s environmental impact by cutting the amount of ecosystem damaging plastic that enters the school district’s waste stream; it may protect the health of MBUSD’s student population as well. The ban would help reduce the estimated 3,200 plastic water bottles that MBMS generates per week.
“At the current rate, by 2050 there will be more plastic by weight in the ocean than marine life,” said eighth-grader Claire K. “Plastic pollution is becoming a crisis throughout the world, and we all need to take decisive action to help.“
The students hope that the plastic water bottle ban will be only the first of many actions the school district takes to become more environmentally friendly. To submit a public comment in support of our student’s project, visit www.mbusd.com/publiccomment.
Write Your Press Release
Download the following worksheet and fill it out with your team to write your own press release.
Copy your press release onto the Phase 3.2 form and then reach out to your advisor. Wait for feedback from your advisor before submitting to any media outlet.
Once the press release is final, we will help you spread the word!
Pick the Media Outlets to Pitch!
On your google form, please include 3 media outlets you would like to submit your Press Release to (after it is reviewed by your Advisor). Examples: Local/community newspaper, local tv station, school newsletter or paper
Having trouble viewing or completing the form below? To view in Google Forms click here – Phase 3.2 Form
You did it – You completed Phase 3 – Take Action
GREAT JOB!! You’ve completed Phase 3! Did you complete the following tasks? You’ll need to before heading into Phase 4:
- ✅ Participate in Mid-Campaign webinar.
- ✅ Implement your task list including your communication strategies.
- ✅ Document your work.
- Write your press release and submit it to your advisor
- Check-in with Advisor.
NEXT STEP: Phase 4 – Celebrate Your Success
Looking for Another Page? Head over to the Campaign’s Table of Contents.