With a focus on environmental issues and sustainable practices, Templestowe Heights Primary Schools became involved in the ‘Sustainable Schools’ project in 2003. We developed partnerships with CERES and Manningham Council, who supported us with expert advice and grant funding. We gained 4Star Accreditation in 2007.
We then began the transition process to the Australian Sustainable Schools Initiative (AUSSI Vic) ResourceSmart Schools Program in November 2008.
In 2009 we achieved accreditation for the Core and Waste Modules.
In 2010 we worked on the Energy Module.
This year we are working through both the Biodiversity and Water Modules. We are well on our way to becoming a 5star ResourceSmart School.
In 2009 Templestowe Heights Primary School focussed on waste reduction as this was our module through the ResourceSmart Schools Program. Our aim was to make the children more aware of the waste generated at our school and to encourage them to find solutions.
We have introduced the ‘Nude Food’ concept where children are encouraged to bring food with no disposable packaging. We have also established a Designated Eating Area, so that children are encouraged to eat before playing. The result has been less waste going to landfill and a much cleaner yard.
Earlier this year the Environmental Captains introduced recyclable canteen lunch bags in an attempt to further reduce the amount of litter generated by our school. The initiative was a great idea and many families supported the idea.
In 2010, our school worked through the Energy Module in the ResourceSmart Program. With funding from CERES the Environmental Captains were involved in a school audit which helped them to understand the amount of energy being used throughout the school, and which appliances used the most power.
Using a grant from both the federal and state governments we were able to install Solar Panels. We celebrated the event with a Whole School Energy Day where children were encouraged to dress up in something yellow. To begin the day, a guest speaker answered children’s questions about solar power in general and our panels in particular. In buddy groups the children rotated through a variety of energy related activities including making solar powered toy cars and designing posters to encourage others to save energy.
Victoria School Garden Awards
Templestowe Heights Primary School has an active group of environmental leaders. All grades elect a representative each semester, and there are two School Environmental Captains who hold the position for the year.
Among other things, it is expected that the environmental leaders will be good role models for other children, report information back to classes after meetings and help to organise whole school activities.