13 Offaly schools awarded Green Flag this week

13 schools from Offaly were awarded the Green Flag this week for their dedication to sustainability and protecting their environment. Despite two school years with closures and challenges posed by COVID-19, 526 schools across Ireland were awarded Green Flags this week, including 33 schools that have been awarded the Green Flag for the first time.

Green-Schools is an environmental management programme for schools which focuses on themes including Litter and Waste; Energy; Water; Travel; Biodiversity; Global Citizenship and Marine Environment. This year schools in Ireland achieved amazing results in the themes:

  • 70% of schools working on our Litter & Waste theme took part in awareness raising action days, with 73% reporting an increase in awareness of litter and waste issues
  • 29% of schools working on the Energy theme managed to make energy savings which is amazing considering the challenges over the last couple of years. 94% of schools saw an increase in awareness on the topic of Energy.
  • 77% of schools awarded for the Green-Schools Travel theme saw an increase the number of students cycling to school and 85% of schools recorded an increase in sustainable travel overall.
  • Schools involved in the Biodiversity theme increased the level of biodiversity nationwide by planting over 2000 trees; creating more than 150 new wildlife-friendly gardens and erecting at least 250 new bird feeding stations
  • 88% of schools working on the Marine Environment theme investigated the sources of marine litter and promoted an action to reduce it
  • 93 secondary school students took part in the Water ambassador programme as part of the Water theme, which provides mentoring and training for committed students who want to make a difference.

Speaking at each ceremony this week, Green-Schools Manager Cathy Baxter congratulated the 526 schools receiving their Green Flag: “We know that you have all been working incredibly hard in your schools over the last year and you continued to find innovative ways to keep the programme going during school closures and social distancing. You managed to have outdoor Committee meetings, online workshops and attending online webinars to keep up to date, so thank you.”

Schools were invited to six online award ceremonies which took place from Monday, October 4th to 8th with the final ceremony for the Water theme taking place on October 14th. At the ceremonies schools enjoyed activities like Sea Shanties and online quizzes, with messages of support played from “Captain Climate”, actor Nicola Coughlan, champion cyclist Lara Gillespie and local authority Environmental Awareness Officers, who support schools during their participation in Green-Schools.

Awarded schools in Offaly

  • Mercy Primary School, Birr
  • Scoil Bhride, Rhode
  • Philomena’s N.S, Tullamore
  • Scoil Bhride Boys N.S, Tullamore
  • Francis B.N.S, Clara
  • Scoil Mhuire Naofa, Rhode
  • Josephs Gortnamona N.S, Tullamore
  • Scoil Mhuire Banrion, Edenderry
  • Scoil Naomh Eoin, Birr
  • Scoil Naomh Mhuire, Tullamore
  • Edenderry Youthreach, Edenderry
  • Scoil Bhride, Edenderry
  • Mary’s N.S, Tullamore

 

About Green-Schools

Green-Schools (known internationally as Eco-Schools), is an international environmental management education programme, environmental management system and award scheme that promotes and acknowledges long-term, whole-school action for the environment, and is operating in 77 countries around the world including; almost all EU member states, Africa, South America, North America, Canada, Oceania and Asia.  Green-Schools is an initiative of FEE (the Foundation for Environmental Education).

The programme is coordinated in Ireland by An Taisce, operated in partnership with Local Authorities and is supported by the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage; Department of Environment, Climate and Communications; Department of Transport, Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media; Department of Foreign Affairs, Irish Aid, National Transport Authority, NPWS, Irish Water, ClothesPod and the Wrigley Company Limited.

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