Green Schools is run by An Taisce and is Ireland’s leading environmental management award programme working with Primary and Secondary schools across Ireland. St. Louise’s Primary School has been involved with Green Schools since September 2008.
To date we have achieved 5 Green Flags and have worked on the following themes
- 2008 – 2010 Litter & Waste Management
- 2010 – 2012 Energy
- 2012 – 2014 Water
- 2014 – 2016 Travel
- 2016 – 2018 Biodiversity
In order to attain a green flag the whole school community needs to embark on a programme of action to promote awareness of a certain environmental issue. The actions take place over a 2 year period. For every theme undertaken the school must follow An Taisce’s 7 Step Action Plan. An environmental audit must be carried out and data must be collected by conducting surveys and gathering information. Pupils must participate in Green School Committee Meetings. Class Reps are usually nominated by their teacher or elected by their peers to serve on the Green School Committee. The Green Schools Committee plays a leading role in raising awareness and suggesting and implementing actions. The school needs to demonstrate that changes have taken place so that environmental improvements are noticeable within the school. The pupils also need to create awareness of the theme in their homes and in the local community.
Before a school is considered for a flag the school’s whole school 2 year action plan must be submitted to An Taisce and An Taisce’s Environmental Officer will visit the school and inspect the pupils’ work.
Flags are only awarded to schools if certain actions have taken place and when certain levels of improvement have been attained.
We are very proud of having achieved 5 Green Flags. We are delighted with the wonderful commitment St. Louise’s school community has made to improve the environment. We know that every small change or improvement we make contributes in a big way to the future survival of our planet. We also know that many small changes can have a really big impact.
Pupils have enjoyed attending An Taisce’s GS Award ceremonies in Croke Park Conference Centre or The Helix, DCU. When pupils are called on stage to collect their school’s latest Green Flag there is always a great sense of delight, pride and achievement. Each time a new flag is awarded a special flag raising ceremony is organised at school with the whole school community in attendance. These days are important occasions on the school calendar and both pupils and staff enjoy the celebrations.
In May 2018, St. Louise’s were invited to participate in an exciting new theme Green-Schools Global Citizenship – Food and Biodiversity. Participating in this theme will enable pupils and teachers to explore how to grow, harvest and prepare their own food using organic means, whilst also investigating the impacts of the current food production system on the local and global environment.
Only 10 schools in the whole country have been selected to be part of this pilot project so we are really looking forward to being involved. This theme is envisioned to be implemented nationwide in future years, so by participating the pupils in our school will continue to create real change and become leaders in the topic of education on Biodiversity and Food.
We look forward to successfully implementing this new campaign and hope we will receive our 6th Green Flag in March 2020.