Year 10 Eco Reps: “We’re passionate about the environment and want to make a difference.”
Sophie, Brianna and Zahra – Year 10 Eco Leads
In the autumn term of Year 10, girls are given the opportunity to follow their own passions and take up Leadership positions within the school, including Eco, Digital, Volunteering, Journalism and Debating. Sophie, Brianna and Zahra applied successfully to be Eco Reps and halfway through their year, they have made a big difference to increasing awareness about the environment at school.
You may have seen them last week handing out anti-idling leaflets at school pick-up and drop-off, but that’s only a part of what they have been up to.
In conjunction with Mrs Henry, Facilities Manager at NHEHS, the team have been working hard to achieve a TFL Stars Travel Bronze Award. The STARS (Sustainable Travel: Active, Responsible, Safe) scheme is TFL’s accreditation scheme for London schools and nurseries. STARS inspires young Londoners to travel to school sustainably, actively, responsibly and safely by championing walking, scooting and cycling. STARS supports pupils’ wellbeing, helps to reduce congestion at the school gates and improve road safety and air quality.
The Eco Leads have worked hard to promote their anti-idling campaign, including running a poster competition for all girls in the school. The team then pinned up the winning posters by Livia and Ellie from Year 10 by the school gates and also handed the leaflets out to both Junior and Senior school parents at pick-up while explaining the importance of no idling in cars. They feel so strongly about vehicles and vans which are parked with their engines running near the school, that they are planning to write to our local MP about the issue. Their long-term aim is to eventually have a ’no idle zone’ in place.
The Year 10 Eco team also led a powerful assembly last week with the Year 12 Geography Reps on the impact of anti-idling, both on health and on the environment.
The Year 10s and Year 12s had already collaborated last term when they put together an art exhibition in the atrium for Science Week to highlight the importance of protecting our oceans from plastic waste and climate change.
Going forward, the Eco Leads will also be promoting Walk/Bike to School Week from 10-14th June and are also hoping to promote all their hard work at the Junior School Fun Day on July 5th.
The team have also worked hard with Mrs Henry to increase recycling at school and stop the use of plastic (where possible). The school is no longer purchasing polystyrene products and are using cups and saucers for most events. From September we are planning to trial using crockery in the sixth-form centre so this will stop the need to recycle. We are also looking into reusable cups for hot chocolate and soup.
We have increased our mixed (tins, plastics, paper) recycling from 1,100 litres to 6,000 litres a week, although we are looking to look at paper usage further as it is one of the largest sources of recycling in school – in the library alone we are recycling a minimum of 50 wasted prints per day. The school also already recycles cardboard (1,100 litres a week), cooking oil, ink cartridges and all batteries and we have recently started recycling electrical items (scrap metal) from our IT department too (1,100 litres quarterly).
Watch this space for more eco initiatives!