Eight schools from the South West of the UK were yesterday (19 June) recognised at the Eden Project in Cornwall for their year-long efforts to cut carbon and change attitudes to energy saving and green issues among staff and pupils.
Past Ashden Award winners Keith Webber from Oakhampton College and Gill Harper from St Column Minor School presented the certificates to the schools, which have spent the year participating in Ashden’s flaghship LESS CO2 programme, designed to share learning about sustainability across UK schools.
Each school has taken a range of innovative steps, such as engaging pupils as classroom ‘energy detectives’; engaging staff to turn off lights and computers; monitoring energy usage; integrating energy awareness into school assemblies and curricula and installing insulation and renewable energy systems such as solar pv.
Emily Lewis, who teaches at Gwinear Primary School in Hayle, Cornwall, said:“Working with Ashden over the last year has really driven our school forward - making our practices more sustainable and educating the next generation in the importance of energy reduction and our responsibilities as consumers of energy.”
Alison Higson, teacher at Trevisker School in Wadebridge, also in Cornwall, said: “At Trevisker we are all too aware of our responsibility to engender a responsible attitude towards looking after our planet in our children, but thanks to Ashden and the programme we have been inspired to go further in a shorter period than we thought possible.”
Simon Brammer, UK Programme Manager at Ashden said: “These schools have been outstanding in their commitment towards sustainability, starting from nothing to embedding energy-saving into their cultures. They are leading the way in creating sustainable buildings and energy-savvy citizens fit for the future.”
Our LESS CO2 programme involves taking the experience of our Award-winning schools and sharing it, through practical support, to help other schools reduce their carbon emissions, save money and enrich their curriculum.
Recruitment for the next year-long LESS CO2 programme is now open to primary and secondary schools in Cornwall and Devon. Participants in the free 12-month scheme, due to start in the autumn, will each receive an energy audit, mentoring and face-to-face teaching.
No prior achievement is necessary - all that’s needed is a commitment to reducing energy consumption and becoming more sustainable.
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