Sustainability

Silverhill Primary School, Mickleover, Derby declared one of the greenest in the country

Silverhill has been declared one of the greenest in England after scooping the prestigious title of Eco-Schools Ambassador. The school is one of just 11 in the country that has been chosen for the role by the international Eco-Schools programme.

Keep Britain Tidy's chief executive Phil Barton: "We are delighted to name the 11 greenest schools in England for 2013.These schools have demonstrated a fantastic commitment to becoming more sustainable and are leading the way in inspiring and education future generations with the skills to lead the way on environmental issues."

The Ambassador selection criteria was tougher than ever as the exceptional winning schools were expected to go that extra mile in demonstrating sustainability is at the centre of the schools culture and ethos.

Mrs McBride who has coordinated the Eco Schools activities over the past 18months said: " We are delighted to have received such a prestigious award for our on-going eco-related work. The staff here at Silverhill work incredibly hard to ensure that the links with sustainability are embedded into their lessons, providing and inspiring and enriched curriculum for our children. We are all very proud of our achievements and look forward to displaying our ambassadors role leading the way with sustainability in our community."

Mrs Nash said: "We are absolutely thrilled with this award. The children are our greatest ambassadors and are well on the way to becoming responsible global citizens and guardians of our planet. The assessors were extremely impressed by the childrens knowledge as well as the innovative leadership model which has been recognised as outstanding practice."

At Silverhill sustainability is central to our philosophy and the spirit of our community. It is our firm belief that sustainability in its entirety can only be successful if our whole school population is committed to working together for the benefit of our local and global community.  We believe that sustainability not just about saving energy or using eco-friendly products but is concerned with how we as individuals live together, caring for each other and our planet. Different aspects of sustainability are studied by the children throughout the year and include learning about Energy and Water, Food and Farming, Global Citizenship, Travel and Transport and Purchasing and Waste.

We are extremely fortunate to have such extensive grounds and all classes and many of the staff have responsibility for an area of the school grounds bird boxes, chickens, willow dome, wildflower meadow, Forest Schools Programme, composting, hedgehog homes, planters, the pond and the allotments, energy monitoring, recycling, Fairtrade, Healthy Tuck Shop. All pupils take their responsibilities seriously and are committed to our Grounds for Change Project and our parents and grandparents are brilliant at helping us create wonderful learning spaces in our grounds.

Through our Enrichment afternoons pupils work together in refreshingly new and innovative ways exploring the issues surrounding sustainability. Parents and friends of the school are encouraged to come and support the activities lending their support and sharing their expertise in different areas. We hold regular after school activities where adults and pupils work together to maintain our different learning spaces and enjoy a warm drink and snack at the end of our events.

We are delighted that our school has been used as a case study in a publication about Global Learning which highlights our whole school approach to learning about global education and the environment.

We are currently enhancing our pond and working in conjunction with Severn Trent Water to create a truly diverse and imaginative learning area for our pupils.