Why do we have an Eco Committee?
The Eco Committee is a great opportunity for pupils at Red Rose to help school be more environmentally friendly. The committee allows children to get more involved in the way school is run by providing pupils with opportunities to communicate their feelings as well as influence decisions that are made.
Our Eco Warriors develop a range of skills during their time on the Eco Committee. We see their confidence grow, their communication skills develop and also their negotiation skills as they express both their own views and the views of all the other pupils they represent.
Who can be an Eco Warrior?
We have Eco Warrior representatives from all Key Stage One and Key Stage Two classes. These Eco Warriors were voted for by their classmates when they put themselves forward as candidates to represent the school.
As Eco Warriors the children are continually responsible for sharing any new information with their class, allowing everyone within school to be informed.
What do we do?
Members of the Eco Committee take part in discussions and also feed back any relevant information to their class. At times, they are requested to ask their class for ideas or take class votes relating to topic areas. Members meet regularly with Miss Withers to discuss their ideas and next steps for moving forward.
Eco News Updates
After carrying out an Environmental Review around school, it was concluded that it’s vital to reduce our plastic footprint. After reviewing and discussing plastic use within school, the children were encouraged to brainstorm ideas on how to reduce.
During meetings, the Eco Warriors have learned about the environmental impact that plastics are having on our planet and have also looked at ways as to how we can reduce plastic in our homes too. The Eco Committee are continually striving to become a plastic free school, especially as the government are requesting every school to be plastic free by 2022.
Below are some of the steps we have taken so far this year to help reduce our plastic footprint:
- It was agreed that the main culprits of plastic within our school are single use plastic bottles and cups, straws and milk cartons, carrier bags, laminating pouches and glitter, to name but a few. The children are striving to combat these items. They are actively sharing information with class members and displaying posters around school
- The Committee have reviewed the use of bins within classrooms and around school. Some classrooms were without a bin. This has now been remedied with 2 new recycling bins for each room. Eco Warriors are encouraging their class peers to use these effectively.
- Eco members have written to our provider of school milk, requesting that alternative packaging be used, namely an alternative to a plastic straw. The children were careful to outline to them that if each child within KS1 (our example of 130 pupils) were to drink milk each school day, 650 straws would have been used just within one week alone – amounting to 25,350 straws being used within the school year – and this shocking number would just be the total for Red Rose Primary! The milk provider responded confirming they have plans to look at their packaging and they will be in touch at a later date.
- It was noted that a significant amount of single use cups are used within school, particularly during parties or after other whole school events. The concern was discussed with our Headteacher and she readily agreed to allow the school to purchase reusable cups, enough for each individual in school
- A ‘Recycle your Pens’ box has been made and is on display in the hall. All staff and children are encouraged to recycle pens when they run dry.
- School have reduced the amount of glitter used, (eg, edible cake decorations being used within our reindeer food) but this needs to be continually monitored.
- A letter was sent to one of the leading supermarkets in Chester-le-Street expressing concerns that many fruit and vegetables are readily packaged in plastic bags for ease of purchase. Eco Warriors were careful to point out the impact on our wildlife and marine life because of this and requested the supermarket look into this.