As an Eco School, we aim to manage the school building and facilities with sustainability at its heart. We want to enable pupils to understand the importance of protecting the environment both locally (within our school and homes) and globally. We seek to empower pupils to become responsible environmentalists, conservationists and overseers as outlined in Putnoe Primary School’s ‘Eco Code’. We also want to provide all pupils with a range of experiences and enrichment opportunities that will teach subject-specific knowledge and vocabulary linked to biodiversity and the environment. We aim for pupils who are disadvantaged, or who have social, emotional and mental health needs, to be prioritised to receive support through additional access to the environmental area during gardening sessions and at playtimes.
Through the framework of the National Curriculum and the Eco-Schools programme, Putnoe Primary School’s Eco Policy aims to:
- Ensure we include coverage of at least 2 of the ten eco topics through existing curriculum teaching and through additional eco-related activities that may run throughout the academic year. This is a cyclical approach, so that different topics are focused on for each yearly Green Flag Award application. The ten eco topics are: litter, waste, energy, water, biodiversity, marine, school grounds, transport, global citizenship and healthy living. Putnoe Primary School also aims to action multiple eco topics through our general practice. For example, daily composting and recycling.
- Maintain the running of an effective school Eco-Council made up of pupils from Years 2-6.
- Adhere to an ‘Eco Code’, drawn up by the Eco Council.
- Complete an annual Staff and Pupil Environmental Review.
- Use our Environmental Reviews to inform a yearly action plan.
- Make continued use of the Environmental Area.
- Complete an annual Environmental Review with the Eco Council to inform our Action Plan for the year. This will steer Putnoe Primary School towards focusing on 2 main eco topics.
- Follow through with all actions on the Action Plan as drawn up by the Eco Council.
- The Eco Council will meet regularly, and meeting minutes will be recorded by the pupils.
- Our Eco Code will be displayed in all classrooms, shared teaching spaces and communal areas to ensure all pupils, staff and visitors are aware of our eco commitments.
- Inform the wider school community about our eco activities through updates in the termly school newsletters.
- The online application form for accreditation of the Eco-School’s Green Flag Award will be completed throughout the year and by the end of the Summer Term.
- Sustrans ‘Big Walk and Wheel’ (or equivalent) competitions will be run in the Spring or Summer terms.
- Litter levels will be monitored by the Eco Council and Eco Lead. If litter levels have increased, additional litter picks, timetabling of class litter picking or anti-litter campaigns will take place.
- Eco links will be mapped onto the school’s Long Term Plan to demonstrate curriculum coverage.
- Run weekly gardening groups for selected pupils on Tuesdays and Wednesdays throughout the term. Each class from Year 1 to Year 6 will be timetabled for 2–3 sessions per half-term with Miss Tierney.
- Manage, maintain and continue to develop the Environmental Area, including planting/harvesting produce in the class allotment beds.
We seek to monitor the impact of our Eco-Schools work using a number of formative and summative assessment opportunities.
- We aim for the Eco-Schools Green Flag Award to be awarded to Putnoe Primary School by the end of the academic year 2023-24 (and will be valid through until the end of 2024-2025).
- Specific areas identified through the Environmental Review will enable areas of weakness in Putnoe Primary School’s Eco-Schools work to be identified and improvements to be made.
- Litter levels will remain low throughout the school grounds due to:
- effective monitoring by the Eco Council;
- a wider community awareness of the importance of keeping our school site litter free.
- Running active travel competitions between classes throughout the year will increase pupils’ use of sustainable travel; pupils and families will be engaged with walking, scooting or cycling to school and high levels of sustainable travel will be evident.
- The positive impact of gardening group sessions will be evident in participating pupils through pupil and teacher feedback.
- Curriculum planning will demonstrate clear Eco links.
- The Environmental Area will continue to be a space for curriculum enrichment, being used as a resource in a range of lessons and it will provide opportunities for pupils from each class to grow their own produce for the kitchen and/or school community.