It’s Back to (Eco) School!

It’s Back to (Eco) School!

Welcome back to all of our wonderful Eco-Schools! We hope you had a fantastic summer and are looking forward to a big year ahead.

It is this stage in the term that new Eco-Committees are being formed. It’s an exciting time and those first few meetings are crucial for building a strong team – committed to improving their school.

Once the committee is in place, a great first action is to conduct a fresh environmental review – who knows what might have changed over the summer! Use our official templates to make it an easy process for your pupils to lead.

Talking of changes – we have some exciting updates for 2017/18!

Firstly, we have worked on our award levels and are pleased to announce that as of this new term, our Bronze, Silver and Green Flag awards have had a refresh with some common sense changes.

Bronze and Silver awards are still self-assessed online. But we want them to act as stepping stones, helping your students to progress through the seven step framework and stay motivated along the way.

For this reason, to gain a Bronze award, you will need to complete steps 1, 2 and 3 (Form an Eco-Committee, Carry out an Environmental Review and Create an Action Plan). See the new criteria here.

To gain a Silver award, you will need to complete steps 4, 5 and 6 (Monitoring and Evaluation, Informing and Involving and Linking to the Curriculum). See the new criteria here.

The Green Flag award has been slightly redesigned and sees a prominent role for your Eco-Boards forming the basis of your application. Check out guidance on Eco-Boards here as these are now key to a successful Green Flag application. We have seen some incredible Eco-Boards over the years and believe that when done correctly, they contain everything we need to know about your school.

This will take the work off of you when applying and allow your Eco-Committee to play a role in the Green Flag application too.

We also have exciting updates with regards to our official Eco-Schools partners. We have set up a partnership to support our Water Topic – with the excellent WaterAid coming on board as Topic Sponsors. As part of this arrangement, we have secured the support of 10 major water companies across the country, offering a huge range of education resources, outreach and opportunities for our Eco-Schools. Check out our WaterAid page to find out more.

We are hugely grateful for the continued support of EDF Energy and their education programme, the Pod, taking our partnership in to its eighth year. Watch out for Switch Off Fortnight this term (20 Nov – 3 Dec).

We are also proud to announce a fourth year of working with Trust LED, helping our schools to gain finance to fund lighting projects which can transform their school – both in terms of long term savings and improvements in learning environments.

Helping Hand have officially come on board to support you with all of your litter-picking needs and we must give a massive shout out to Diversey Care, our Headline Sponsors, whose support in all areas has been essential for us in developing the programme.

Together, we can build the greenest schools estate in the world – with the most clued up, passionate young people making sure that it’s a positive future for all of us.

Here’s to a green 2017/18!