Schools are part of the California Drought and Water Quality Solution

Eliza Jane Whitman 1, PE, LEED AP, ENV SP, Ali Poosti 2, PE, Flor Burrola 2, Lenise Marrero 2, PE, Azya Jackson 2, PE, Rebecca Drayse 1, Susie Santilena 3, PE

1 EW Consulting, Inc.
2 City of Los Angeles – LA Sanitation, Wastewater Engineering Services Division
3 City of Los Angeles – LA Sanitation, Watershed Protection Division


Through the One Water LA program, the City of LA (City) is working with the California State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB or State Water Board) to determine the feasibility of capturing offsite stormwater for infiltration or for capture and reuse at schools throughout the state. As a result, the City has identified many of the issues that need to be addressed by school districts, municipalities and counties to develop agreements and memorandums of understanding to implement cooperative projects and programs.

KEYWORDS: Stormwater management, offsite stormwater, water quality, water supply, flooding, drought, resiliency, schools


Objectives of One Water LA 2040 program include the integration of water resource management by increasing coordination and cooperation between City departments, partners, regional entities, agencies, and other stakeholders. In the State of California, there are 1,025 school districts (CA Department of Education), which utilize much public land, and, thus, hold much potential for partnership opportunities. One Water LA has evaluated potential opportunities for using land owned by school districts in the State of California as well as the applicable requirements of the State Water Resources Control Board to understand the feasibility of capturing offsite stormwater on school sites. Discussed in this paper is the magnitude of potential opportunity on school property for water quality improvements and potentially augment local water supplies. There are many partnership opportunities between school districts and public agencies that have existing stormwater permit requirements. A partnership example between a small school district and the State’s Department of Transportation (Caltrans) is provided.

To read or download the complete report, click here.

To view the PDF of WEFTEC-2017 CA School presentation, click here.


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