An Eco-Committee should meet formally at least once every half term and informally a little more often to get stuck into the project work. Try to make sure at least one pupil from every year group is on the committee; it is great if schools can get a school governor, a parent or guardian and a site manager on board too. An Eco-Committee is supported by an adult Eco-Coordinator but led by pupils. Any member of staff can be the Eco-Coordinator, but it can be a shared role and it is good to get several teaching staff involved if possible.
See below for the Eco-Committee criteria for Eco-Schools.
- Pupils are nominated by their peers to be on the Eco-Committee. This includes all KS1, KS2, KS3 and KS4 year groups in the school. Nurseries, colleges and specialist schools can adapt their Eco-Committee to suit their setting. NB. It is not necessary to re-elect the pupils on the Eco-Committee every academic year, allow pupils to remain on the Eco-Committee if they wish, so they are able to see the impacts of their actions.
- Pupils are given the opportunity to invite along non-teaching staff to join their meetings to help them with a particular topic they have chosen to work on. There is a representation from the parents or governing body on your Eco-Committee.
- The committee meets at least once every half term.
- Pupils share responsibility with adults for running meetings and keeping a record of the meetings.
- Minutes are displayed on your Eco-Board.
- Reports of your Eco-Committee meetings are made available to the Board of Governors and PTA.
- Pupil representatives ensure that there is communication to and from the Eco-Committee to the rest of the school
The role of the Eco-Committee
Your Eco-Committee is the heartbeat of Eco-Schools action and learning.
The Eco-Committee is tasked with:
- Ensuring that the whole school is aware of the Eco-Schools programme;
- Taking the lead in carrying out the Environmental Review;
- Ensuring that everyone in the school community is represented in the decision-making process (as far as possible);
- Providing a link between pupils, teachers, senior management team, governors and the whole school community;
- Taking the lead in delivering the Eco-Schools Action Plan.
The size of the Eco-Committee and where and how often it will meet is decided by each school, although we recommend that the team meets at least every half-term (roughly eight weeks).
Through their involvement in the Eco-Committee, your pupils will develop many key skills.
To be effective, your Eco-Committee will need to work well together. Eco-Coordinators, in their role as facilitator, are well placed to nurture some key skills and values: