The chosen topic
for our 3A CSPE project was attaining the Green Flag for our school,
lots of hard work but very rewarding with on-going benefits for the
school and the environment. The Green Flag programme is run by An
Taisce in conjunction with the local authority, so the first step
is contacting both and registering for the flag with an Taisce.
The local environmental officer in Galway County Council very helpful
and we invited her to the school to outline what the benefits of the
project would be and to give us guidelines on how to achieve our goal.
This was a little mini project in its own right, having set up the
The Permission Committee – sought the principal's permission
for setting up the project and inviting guest speakers.
The Invitation Committee – wrote a letter of invitation to
The Room Committee – organised rooms for talk
The Welcoming Committee – welcomed speaker – tea in staffroom
– introduced her to audience.
The Questions Committee – organised questions beforehand and
people to ask them on the day.
The Thank You Committee – organised a card and thank you gift
and gave a little speech to the visitors when they left. Following
on our meeting with the Environmental Officer we set up a central
committee within the class group – it was voluntary and then I asked
people to become chairperson, PR officer and secretary from this group
based on their interests and talents. An environmental study was conducted
over three days, with pupils going out and monitoring the litter before
first break and again after second break, and tabulating the results.
We issued questionnaires to caretaker, science room, kitchen, staffroom
etc. to determine what type of waste was being produced and we made
known the findings to the school population on a “Green School's Notice
Board.” We then formulated an action plan and decided on the aims
for the project.
Realising that far too much was being sent to land fill we decided
upon a recycling policy which was aided by the fact that the waste
collectors in the area had begun to introduce a recycling programme.
We organised new bins for recycling paper, cans, plastic, a green
cone for fruit, tea-bags etc. and bird tables(made by TY) for left
over lunches. We made a plan of the school which we displayed on the
Green Flag Notice Board giving the name of students in charge of different
areas in the school. A letter was sent home to parents and to the
local newspaper to publicise our project and got an interview on local
radio. We spoke to the whole school population as it would not succeed
without their co-operation and gradually they came on board.
There was a slogan competition, a literary and an art competition
to highlight the Green Flag concept and some students made up signs
for the various bins, ones to remind people to conserve energy and
water and took the winning slogan as the green school motto and having
laminated them, hung them in appropriate places around the school.
The litter situation was continuously monitored and students were
very vigilant in keeping their assigned areas clean.
Other activities undertaken included a tree planting ceremony for
national tree week, a clean-up day where the whole school participated
and during which we planted shrubs and flowers. We invited parents
in to see the fruits of our labour on open day and had a magazine
printed for the occasion. We then applied before March for the Green
Flag, answering a fairly detailed set of questions and sending copies
of aims, plan of actions, etc. We had our school assessment after
that and received our flag in the An Taisce office, Black Lane Dublin
8 at the end of May.
It is a very worthwhile on-going project that fosters the pupil's
sense of rights and responsibilities and stewardship while developing
their own talents and creative ideas. It is also a great way of engendering