WASHINGTON (June 22, 2022) – What sustainable solutions do you want to see at your school? That’s the question the Propane Education & Research Council (PERC) is asking students and parents to think about as part of a new scholarship contest to promote environmentally friendly practices at school—like riding on a clean, propane-powered school bus.

PERC’s “Be Like Jack” sustainability contest, held in partnership with The Week Junior magazine, is inspired by Jack Kendrick, a middle school student from South Carolina that successfully petitioned his school district to purchase the state’s first propane-powered special needs school bus. Jack earned PERC’s first Clean Energy Hero Award for his actions.

Students ages 8-14 interested in entering the contest can visit theweekjunior.com/percbigideas to submit a drawing with a short, written response about how they would make their school more sustainable. One winner from each age group (8-9, 10-11, 12-14) will earn a $2,000 donation to their school to put toward a sustainability project of its choice.

“Jack is an inspiration to us all, and we know there are many more children just like him who have big ideas on how to make the world a more sustainable place,” said Stephen Whaley, director of autogas business development for PERC. “By advocating for propane school buses, Jack was able to significantly reduce harmful emissions for his classmates, his bus driver, and his community. Imagine what could happen if every student stood up for their sustainable idea, and we’re excited to kickstart a cleaner future through these donations.”

Additionally, one grand prize winner will also get to meet The Space Gal, Emily Calandrelli, during a special Day of Science event at their school. Emily is an MIT-engineer turned Emmy-nominated science TV host and co-executive producer of Emily’s Wonder Lab on Netflix. She’s also featured as a correspondent on Netflix’s Bill Nye Saves the World and an executive producer and host of FOX’s Xploration Outer Space. Emily is the author of the science chapter book series, the Ada Lace Adventures.

“These students have the power to change the world with their ideas and make their community a cleaner place to live,” said Calandrelli. “We hope this contest inspires them to think big about how they can make a difference, just like Jack with his propane school bus.”

More than 1,000 school districts across the country have improved its sustainability by adopting propane-powered school buses, including many districts that have replaced entire diesel fleets with clean propane. Compared to modern diesel buses, propane buses reduce harmful nitrogen oxide emissions by 96%, which is the key building block to smog and ozone formation that can aggravate respiratory issues. Propane school buses also have the lowest total cost-of-ownership of any fuel, saving districts money that can go back into the classroom. Learn more about propane school buses, by visiting BetterOurBuses.com.

To submit an entry into the “Be Like Jack” contest, or to view official rules of entry, visit theweekjunior.com/percbigideas. Entries must be submitted by July 15, 2022.


About PERC: The Propane Education & Research Council is a nonprofit that provides leading propane safety and training programs and invests in research and development of new propane-powered technologies. PERC is operated and funded by the propane industry. For more information, visit Propane.com.