Key Concept: The principle of sustainability surrounds the theory that using resources should meet the needs of the current population without negatively impacting the lives, prospects and availability of resources for future generations. Sustainability however, is more than just environmentally based, the concept of sustainability takes into account a variety of areas within a school, as depicted in the diagram below.
Vision: Our vision is to increase awareness of our students, parents and the local community surrounding the range of measures we are putting in place to increase the sustainability of our school site. We will steadily increase our sustainability efforts each year as participation, understanding and enthusiasm improves.
Approach: Our approach will surround the four key areas depicted in figure 1. By systematically working through these elements we can ensure we are attempting to increase the schools' sustainability in its entirety, not simply through environmental measures. In addition, by looking at sustainability holistically, we hope to involve a wider range of our schools' population as well as organisations who directly influence the school, such as caterers and cleaners.
Our Eco Commitee with the awarded Green Flag for our school. (2022/23)
In 2022/23, TMSA were proud to have achieved the Eco Schools Green Flag award. This was accomplished through a year-long process in which the eco committee strived to tackle 3 core topics. These being Transport, Waste and Bio-diversity.
This year our school has made the decision to work towards the Eco-Schools Green Flag accreditation once again!
With the world beginning to experience the effects of climate change; many different species of plant and animals becoming extinct; and micro-plastics being found in the most remote locations on Earth – we feel now is the time to educate future generations about the impact of our actions on the planet we call home.
The Eco-Schools programme does this through providing a simple framework that has been designed to raise awareness of environmental issues whilst empowering young people to make a positive difference by taking a lead on environmental actions and projects in their school and local community.
The program is broken down into seven steps that take place over the academic year and gives young people the freedom to decide on the environmental issues they would like to tackle, what actions they would like to take and how they are going to involve their school and community.
The Eco-Schools programme began in 1994, is delivered in more than 70 countries around the world and in England is operated by the environmental charity 'Keep Britain Tidy'. The programme not only positively impacts our planet (for example schools participating in the programme planted 37,865 trees during the last academic year), it also benefits young people, building teamwork and leadership skills whilst increasing confidence and reducing eco-anxiety.
You can find out more on the Eco-Schools website here:
The eco-schools green flag divides sustainability into 10 categories which our school continues to develop.
These 10 categories are:
- The school has acquired 13 new plant saplings to be planted on the school site. The eco-committee will be choosing a location for these in the spring to add more natural habitats to the school’s ground
- The school recently received new compost bins from the local council and will be used by our key skills group alongside their vegetable garden
- The school uses projects in D&T such as the bird box project to create homes for our local bird population which students are able to keep for their own gardens or donate to the school site
- Bug hotels were made by the students in D&T which are situated around the school site
- Paper pots and peat-free compost were used to sow runner and French beans
- Some of the plants will be available for Sopwell residents at pop-up seedling stalls at locations around the ward encouraging local people to grow their own food.
- The school uses its Oracy initiative in form times and lessons to help create awareness on a number of issues including the pollution and destruction of habitats taking place in our oceans
- Our canteen is starting to move away from single use plastics and has introduced more bio-friendly products such as biodegradable cutlery and food containers
- The school council helped run a campaign of posters which can be found in all classrooms and hallways. The campaign is designed to remind everyone to turn off lights, projectors, and computers after use
- Design and technology are looking at sustainable products including the design of a sustainable wind turbine with some of its students
- The school monitors its energy carefully with the installation of smart energy meters
- Our brand-new double-glazed windows found all around the school have helped our classrooms become more energy efficient by making sure rooms are better insulated
- The schools have recently opened ‘The M Store’ This is an on-site food, hygiene and clothes bank designed to support not only our school community but also the wider community. Our poverty prevention office is working alongside local charities and organisations to maintain a fully stocked store to aid people during the cost-of-living crisis
- The school runs frequent charitable events such as the McMillan coffee morning, guide dogs trust and the Remembrance Day for the Royal British legion. All proceeds of these events go to supporting our local and national charities
- Celebrating diversity is something the school has made a huge effort to incorporate into the school curriculum. Creating awareness and celebrating our differences has become a regular part of our weekly PowerPoints to students as well as assemblies and posters around the school
- At the end of the year the school does run a uniform swap where parents can come in and trade or purchase second hand uniform donated to the school from other parents or local organisations
- Every year each form comes together to compete in the shoe box challenge, students donate gifts and supplies which are then given to families in need over the Christmas holidays
- Marlborough prides itself on its pastoral care for both staff and students ensuring support is provided for those in need with on-site councillors and designated mental health leads
- The canteen offers a wide variety of healthy food options for both students and staff.
- Our poverty prevention officer works closely with families and students to provide food and meal passes ensuring they have access to a balanced diet
- The Key skills group have been working hard to develop our small garden area into allotments to start their own vegetable gardens
- The staff runs a ‘buddy’ system where they are randomly paired up with another member of staff for the school year. Buddies exchange gifts and support for one another to help promote staff well-being
- Staff have a litter pick challenge. The staff with the golden litter pick encourages all staff to pick up litter on their duties and are rewarded after every half term
- Students have previously been encouraged to keep our site tidy using the litterati app which tracks and monitors their involvement
- The school recently received new recycling bins from the council to promote more plastic and paper recycling
- Bids for large recycling bins have been made to go round key areas of the school site to promote better recycling for students
- The form litter pick gives every student an opportunity to spend some of their form time doing their bit to help tidy up the schools’ grounds
On Thursday 30th November 2023, the Eco Committee took part in a targeted litter pick of the Franklin quad, an area the students would like to further develop in the future.
- The school moved its Jubilee garden which meant the planting of new trees and flowers on the school’s field where the garden was moved to
- The small pond area has been revamped by the key skills group, new wildflowers have been planted for the local wildlife and allotments built on the more open land
- Our humanities department are turning a small green space outside their building into a mini eco-garden for wildlife. This will also incorporate water from drainpipes to reduce wastewater
- The design and technology department recently turned an overgrown area into an up-cycled picnic area for students
Our amazing Jubilee Gardens
Covered Canopy Area
- The school has recently introduced chrome books to our lower year groups which will stay with students throughout their school journey. The introduction of chrome books will cut down the need for paper
- The eco-committee recorded their opinions on waste and the environment which was broadcasted on a local radio station on Christmas day
- Our design and technology department have introduced and up-cycle project for their GCSE students to encourage the use of sustainable materials
- The LRC offers recycling opportunities for electronics and batteries
- The school runs a second-hand uniform sale at the end of the year in which families can come and trade in uniform
Students upcycling mugs, sowing seeds for our hanging garden project. More pics to follow
- We create awareness in all our toilet blocks for students to turn off taps and running water in an effort to save wastewater
- Students are encouraged to use re-usable water bottles in school and water fountains are provided around site which minimalize wastewater
- The school is looking into turning wastewater from drains and pipes into useful water for some of our eco gardens