Parap Primary School in Parap, NT, has been awarded the prestigious Eco-Schools Silver Award for exceptional achievement in ‘greening’ physical structure and grounds, conserving natural resources and integrating environmental education into the curriculum. It is the firt school in the Northern Territory to attain the silver-level award, Eco-Schools Australia’s second of three awards honor.
Parap ‘s Eco-warriors have been working towards achieving the Silver Award with the help of their teachers, in particular Ms. Chelsea Collins. To achieve the silver, they tackled a range of sustainability initiatives from litter and waste to energy, water, biodiversity and healthy lifestyle, which are all designed to raise environmental and natural awareness, cut waste, increase student engagement and save money for the school. They began with forming an Eco-warriors team, then auditing and tallying waste, visiting a waste management facility and promoting minimal packaging in lunch boxes and growing their own vegetables. They also organized a solar-powered cinema night and disco as well as making solar powered cookers out of shoe boxes. But their most well-known project is undoubtedly the Boomerang Bags, reusable shopping bags made by the kids themselves, their family or volunteers, that locals can buy or borrow and bring back, thus avoiding single-use plastic bags.
The Eco-Schools Program is the world’s largest Environmental Education program operating in 67 countries. It aims to make environmental awareness and action an intrinsic part of the life and ethos of a school. Its participatory approach and combination of learning and action makes it an ideal way for schools to begin improving the environments of schools and their local communities.
Eco-Schools work through a simple seven-step process resulting in the program becoming central to the school’s ethos. Schools can choose from ten eco-topics ranging from litter and waste to energy, biodiversity and water, to name a few. Eco-Schools work towards achieving awards – bronze, silver and the prestigious Green Flag.
The internationally recognized Green Flag is this highest award given to Eco-Schools and symbolizes excellence in the field of environmental activity.
Well done Parap Primary School on this well deserved award!
To find out more about Eco-Schools and how your school can get involved, please contact Heimo.