New student-led Eco-Committee is encouraging young leadership in support of green initiatives, including tree-planting and recycling
This work has seen a brand-new Eco-Committee set up at the academy which is enabling young leaders to develop their own ideas for how to tackle environmental issues and encourage whole-school engagement.
The Eco-Committee, which comprises students from Year 7 to Year 10, has recently worked on an environmental review of the school looking at topics including waste, biodiversity and energy. They have devised an action plan and an Eco-Code for how they would like to change the habits of both students and staff to reduce waste and improve biodiversity around the school grounds.
Alongside this, the students are working closely with staff towards achieving The Eco Schools Green Flag – an international accreditation that has recognised and rewarded young people’s environmental actions for over 25 years. This involves demonstrating their commitment to green initiatives and designing programmes for the school which will help improve local and global communities, such as a new recycling scheme and the ‘Turn off BA’ initiative – with the latter aiming to ensure that all unnecessary electricity outputs at Barnsley Academy are turned off overnight.
Recently, students also supported a local initiative headed by Dan Jarvis, Labour MP for Barnsley Central, to plant more trees in the area. Representatives from Barnsley Academy’s Eco-Committee joined Mr Jarvis earlier this month to plant a new tree in the school grounds.
Commenting on their work on the new Eco-Committee, Cameron Wild, a Year 10 student at Barnsley Academy, said:
“Our work has helped reduce waste. We have reduced the number of computers left on overnight and started a paper a recycling programme. We have also started to improve the biodiversity around our school grounds. It has helped us to understand how much we could change our environment around school. Small changes make a big difference. Overall, I really enjoy working with others to help make our school a better place and I am looking forward to working on more projects in the future.”
Naveed Khan, Principal at Barnsley Academy, said:
“Combatting the effects of climate change and protecting our precious natural resources is an issue close to many of our hearts, including our students. Through our new Eco-Committee, it has been fantastic to see our students developing initiatives that will make a difference both in school and locally and showing leadership as they put them into practice. We look forward to supporting them to continue this work and taking positive steps to address environmental issues for the future.”