Eco Schools Introduction
Eco Schools is an international initiative designed to encourage whole-school action for the environment. It is an environmental management tool, learning resource and recognised award scheme.
Eco Schools is much more than an environmental management system for schools. It is a programme for promoting environmental awareness in a way that links to most, if not all, curriculum subjects.
In particular, many cross-curricular issues such as citizenship, education for sustainable development, health education, social and environmental justice and the global dimension can be tackled through involvement in Eco Schools. The Eco Schools process is holistic. It works by involving the whole school - pupils, teachers and other staff, together with members of the local community - parents, the local authority, the media and local businesses. It will encourage teamwork and help create a shared understanding of what it takes to run a school in a way that respects and enhances the environment.
What Larbert High School Does...
Litter Picks – Each term the Eco-Schools team along with the whole of S1 go out into the school ground and the local area and carry out a litter pick. The afternoon consists of a walk up to Stenhousemiur precinct and around the local housing estates to collect any litter that has been left lying.
Extra litter bins and location of bins in the school grounds – Each year the Eco-Schools team consult the number and location of the litter bins in the schools. If new bins are bought the Eco team meet and discuss the location of these before they are distributed.
Energy Cards and stickers – Every member of staff in the school has an energy saving card which is to be displayed in each classroom, and stickers are displayed on computers and light switches.
Energy Audits – Audits are carried out on random occasions to see how staff are getting on and whether they are doing all they can to reduce the energy the school uses. The audits look at the number of classrooms with lights on, electrical equipment on, and windows open or closed (dependent on time of the year).
Blue Bags – Every room in the school has a blue Falkirk council recycling bag. This is for paper, card, plastic bottles and cans and is emptied every weeks.
Battery Recycling – In the staffroom there is a container for all types of batteries to go for recycling.
Printer Cartridge Recycling – There is a large cardboard box in the staffroom for collecting all types of printer cartridges to go for recycling.
Textile Bank – At the back of C Block there is a textile recycling bank from Rag-Bag. This takes clothes, paired shoes, hats, bags, belts, curtains, towels and bed linen (sheets, pillow covers, duvet covers).
School and Community Garden – Working alongside CATCA the school has a community garden that is a useful resource for the school for planting wildflowers, vegetables and used as an outdoor classroom.
With the above and the school has been very successful in gaining 3 Green Flag and has been an Eco-School for over 10 years.
What Larbert High School gets out of it...
- The opportunity to make environmental and global issues an intrinsic part of the life of the school.
- The opportunity to develop young people’s decision-making skills.
- Access to curriculum materials and ideas for projects and events.
- Access to a network of support agencies across Scotland and beyond.
- Links with other schools in the UK, Europe and Africa.
- Prestigious awards.
- Opportunities for local and national publicity.
- Potential for financial savings.