School Spotlight

Seven schools ‘go green’ and certify as Ontario EcoSchools

June 21, 2018—Congratulations to seven elementary schools recognized as EcoSchools for their green initiatives.

Some highlights from the 2017-18 school year include the following:

Bayside Public School, awarded Gold (1st year participating)

  • Recognized for excellent energy conservation efforts
  • Recognized for excellent waste minimization efforts
  • Ran a successful battery recycling campaign called “Recycle Your Batteries”
  • Ran a successful single-use straws campaign called “Let’s Say No to Single-Use Straws!”

Harry J. Clarke Public School, awarded Bronze (1st year participating)

  • Students campaigned for wildflower and native species planter boxes in the school yard to “Bring Back the Bees” and wrote a letter to the principal and vice-principal with their request and reasoning
  • Students raised awareness about waste from lunches and campaigned for “Wasteless Wednesdays”

Hermon Public School, awarded Silver (1st year participating)

  • Students are in the process of creating a composting program
  • Students in Kindergarten and Grades 4, 5, and 6 created a food garden and planned a no-mow zone with help of the custodian; they plan to host a community dinner with any vegetables and produce grown
  • Students and staff started a recycling program (prior to, all waste was going to garbage) and reinforced its usage to the school with announcements, posters and presentations
  • Students ran a Clean Up Habitats campaign to clean their school yard of garbage

Kente Public School, awarded Gold (1st year participating)

  • Classrooms participate in composting, vermicomposting, and reducing waste around lunchtimes with Boomerang Wednesdays and the Golden Lunchbox Award initiatives
  • The school has built a new raised-bed food garden. Students wrote letters to local business asking for donations, and families will sign up for caring for the beds over the summer months. The school also worked with a local botanist to identify drought-resistant native species, the Food Security Network of Prince Edward County, Indigenous educators, and the Food Bank

Madoc Public School, awarded Silver

  • Recognized for a good variety of Curriculum lessons, from learning about the plight of polar bears in climate change, to creating models of watersheds and rivers, to learning about saving the bees
  • The school ran Lights-Off Lunches to raise awareness about energy consumption and conservation
  • The school investigated waste and money spent on plastic spoon, and banned them to combat these issues

Stirling Public School, awarded Silver

  • The school undertook four school ground greening projects which all resulted from classroom inquires and research:
    • Grade 1 students created a native pollinator garden
    • Grade 3 students worked in the greenhouse
    • the EcoTeam created multi-grade planter boxes
    • Learning Forest initiatives

York River Public School, awarded Silver

  • School hosted a clothing swap to highlight the impact of fashion and textile waste; families came in and donated/shopped for used goods
  • School participated in a school-wide Earth Hour, learning how the impacts of small acts can make a big difference
  • School coordinated a Sweater Day initiative, where everyone wore sweaters and turned the heat down a few degrees to raise awareness about energy conservation

EcoSchools is a provincial program that addresses environmental issues in the school system. Student leadership is nurtured to foster environmental learning and actions in the school community. All publicly-funded schools can apply for the annual certification program for free.

Four certification levels can be completed, helping schools work toward common environmental goals and student engagement. Certification is based on a provincial standard of excellence and reaches 1,000,000 students across Ontario.

Each school receives an EcoSchools plaque in recognition of the achievement.

For more information, please contact:
Kerry Donnell, Communications Officer, 613-966-1170 or 1 800 267-4350, extension 2354, [email protected]

Last updated: June 21, 2018 at 12:48 pm
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