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The Grammar School at Leeds awarded Eco-Schools Green Flag

Monday 11 July 2022

Students at The Grammar School at Leeds (GSAL) are celebrating after being accredited with a coveted international environmental award.  The Eco-Schools Green Flag recognises a school’s outstanding efforts to reduce its impact on the planet. The students on GSAL’s Eco-Committee used their free time to tackle some of the most pressing environmental issues at the school. These included:

  • Stopping the sale of plastic bottles, plastic cups and single use drinks cans at the school
  • Planting 250 trees in the school grounds and securing funding to plant 14 hectares of native woodland on grazed land, plus removing over 500 old plastic tree guards
  • Transforming a dried-up old pond into a new one that is thriving with wildlife

Biology teacher, Chris Bodington, who initiated the Green Flag status application, said: “The Eco-Committee really enjoyed seeing the pond transformed from a dried-up overrun area with nettles to a thriving, mixed woodland pond and seeing the return of many frogs.”

The young people were also praised for their fundraising campaign to plant trees at an indigenous community in Brazil that GSAL has a partnership with. Students made a ‘tree of pledges’ to plant trees in the Atlantic Forest of the Terena Indigenous community through the school’s twinning project with the Terena community and the charity RAIN www.rainumbrella.org/.

Ms Bodington said the award showed that GSAL is committed to becoming environmentally sustainable. “It does not mean that we are perfect by any means but it does mean that we are committed to the journey of reducing our ecological and carbon footprint. We must continually work on actions every year to keep the accreditation so it locks us in to reviewing our environmental impact and proving that we are taking tangible steps to reducing it.”

Adam Flint, Eco-Schools Manager, said: “The Grammar School at Leeds made great use of the COP26 United Nations Summit, using it to inspire some brilliant work. They ensured that the whole school community were involved in their Eco-Schools activity and communicated the benefits and impact of their work far and wide. The ‘Turn off your engines’ project is very timely, as fuel prices are increasing and they set some great goals connecting to enhancing biodiversity, clearing litter and reducing waste. Keep up the great work!”

The school’s young campaigners also made a film using the committee’s eco-code EARTH:

Educate yourself on the issues surrounding the biodiversity and climate crises.

Take personal, collective, national and global Action.

Reduce your use of resources.

Think about the Earth in all of your choices to

Help the earth.”

 

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