Jan. 21, 2015

2014 Sustainable Schools Awards

Wow! There are some amazing things happening at Eastern Suburbs schools and early learning centers! Judging the awards was very hard this year with some really cool projects in the running. From bug hotels to energy ninjas to fancy homes for frogs, the creativity and engagement was really inspiring.

Nominees and supporters gathered at the Randwick Sustainability Hub for an afternoon of networking, yummy organic food and inspiration.

The winners of the 2014 ESSSN Sustainable Schools Awards were:

Biodiversity

Winner - Maroubra Bay Public School, “Garden of dreams, if we build it they will come”

Year 4 students were involved in ‘hands on’ activities where the ultimate aim was to increase biodiversity in their school . They built a ‘lizard lounge’ and a ‘Bug Hotel’.  This encourages native wildlife, such as blue Tongue lizards, and insect pollinators into the school garden, and  reduces the need for artificial pest control.

Highly commended - Waterford Preschool , “Organic Vegetable garden”

A vegetable garden was installed in the outdoor area to support the children's understanding of growing and producing their own food.

Highly commended - Kensington Public School, “Playground Green Wall”

This project aimed to increase biodiversity, provide produce for the schools Kitchen Garden Club as well as to invigorate and soften the look and feel of the playground in an urban area.

Waste

Winner - Bronte Public School, “Ramp up Recycling”

To significantly reduce the amount of recyclable materials being sent to landfill, 4 red bin lids were painted and converted to yellow recycling bins.  The school is working towards achieving it's target of an 80% reduction in recyclable materials going to landfill.

Highly commended - Randwick Public School, “Waste warriors”

Year 6 classes have led the school and staff in a radical waste reduction campaign to halve red bin rubbish by introducing waste free lunches every day and by including compost buckets at recess eating time.

Energy

Winner - Clovelly Public School, “Climate Clever Energy Savers and the Energy Ninjas”

This project focused on Energy Saving and Greenhouse gas reduction where unnecessary light use was the main concern – the ‘energy ninjas’ noted unnecessary use by other classes, request lights off in the classroom, question unnecessary use of the SmartBoard, and requested technology free days.

Student Leadership

Winner - Clovelly Public School, “Climate Clever Energy Savers and the Energy Ninjas”

The involvement of the students at all levels of the Energy Ninjas project reinforced their feeling of being valued,  empowered them as school and global citizens able to make a difference.

Highly commended - Montessouri East “Leading to Sustainability”

Their project draws the oldest students into leadership roles where "peer groups" of children in ages ranging from 6-12 work together to develop ideas on growing food, raising animals, and managing waste.

 The Judges award went to Maroubra Early Learning Centre for their overall sustainability efforts. Whilst, Rose Bay Secondary College got a special mention for their handmade planter boxes.

This years winners received a $60 voucher for the Randwick Nursery and a copy of Outdoor Classrooms by Carolyn Nuttall and Janet Millington. Highly commended awardees received a $40 voucher for the Randwick Nursery.

Well done to all those who entered, keep up the great work. We look forward to seeing what amazing ideas you come up with next year.

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