Suffolk school goes solar - after push from eco-minded pupils
- Credit: Archant
A Suffolk primary school has installed dozens of solar panels in a bid to reduce its carbon footprint - following a push by eco-minded pupils.
Gorseland Primary School, in Martlesham, has had 106 panels installed after an elected committee of pupils – nicknamed ‘The Eco Warriors’ – suggested the school could do more to be green.
Spurred on by the committee, pupils conducted an eco-review of the entire school and chose three areas they wanted to work on - electricity, paper towel waste and recycling.
The school has now designated 90% of its bins for recycling only, replaced paper towels with cloth towels in the toilets and created a team to monitor the use of electricity at the school.
It has created a compost area for food waste and will be keeping a close eye on its IT equipment - making sure all computers are switched off completely over night.
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Headteacher Darren Jackson said the school will follow up the eco-drive with a visit to a recycling centre later in the year, so the children can see how recycled waste is transformed into new products.
He said: “This has all come from the children, I’m being harangued left, right and centre.
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“Their view is we should be doing more to be green and to create out own electricity, so that is what we have done.”
The school has already earned a Keep Britain Tidy Bronze Eco School Award and is well on the way to a silver.
It aims to earn a gold award within the next 12 months.
As well as nurturing a green ethos in the children, the school is also keen to teach them the importance of health and nutrition.
On Tuesday, the pupils had a special visit by chef Jamie White, from Caterlink, who spoke to the pupils about the different types of fruit and vegetables and the importance of eating 10 a day.
He then held a bread baking workshop with Year 3 pupils, inviting their parents to come in and join the fun.
Mr Jackson said it was about giving the pupils a chance learn through experience.
He said: “We are looking at real purposes for reading, writing and communication, so the children take a more investigative approach to learning.
“I think that’s a far more interesting way for them to learn.”