Ferring CE Primary School cut 22% in their carbon emissions
16 December 2011
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Energy is a theme we continually focus on throughout the school in a bid to make the children more environmentally aware and to save the school money.
Delivering the project and linking it to the curriculum
The energy saving initiatives have come through a variety of sources, pupils, staff, governors and the School’s Property Development Plan.
We had a monitor in Assembly which showed electricity usage. We took a reading with all the lights on in the school, and gradually switched them off, whilst checking the monitor. The children were amazed at the saving in energy this simple measure created.
The PDP and Governors have been crucial in the installation of new windows in some of the classrooms and in the main hall. Sensor lighting has also been installed in the hall, and is already in place along the corridors.
The computers in the ICT suite were upgraded to more efficient models. These take less time to turn on and off so they do not have to be switched on in advance of lessons and therefore be on much longer than necessary.
Staff are responsible for turning off the computer equipment at the end of the day, including the whiteboard and projector, and this is monitored by the Premises Officer. Previously, computer equipment may have been on all night, and even all weekend.
In addition the heating is now turned off at weekends as well as in the holidays.
Year 6 cover energy/carbon emissions/global warming in the curriculum.
Further pupil participation is listed below.
I feel we have changed the attitudes of people within the school and for switching off lights and electrical equipment to become the most acceptable practice, and for people to realise that it is a waste of precious resources and money.
Staff and pupils will consider their energy usage and whether it is necessary.
Getting the pupils involved
Pupils in the school’s eco-club – The Green and Friendlies – have chosen to focus their classes on the little things which can make a big difference. Each class has its own lights monitor and computer monitor who make sure that the lights are off when people aren’t in the classroom and that the computer equipment is turned off at the end of the day and monitors are off when the computers aren’t being used.
There are also ‘close the door’ and ‘close the window’ notices up in classrooms and other rooms around the school to encourage people to keep the heat in during the winter so that the thermostats can be reduced.
The Green and Friendlies chose where these posters went and we have monitors to make sure these are closed too,
The Green and Friendlies take regular meter readings to remind them that the school uses energy and they can see how much is being used throughout the year.
Benefits of being an Eco-School
We have reduced our carbon emissions. The new computers have meant that ICT lessons have been directly affected and children can be on the PCs much longer in a lesson.
Devolved Formula Capital Grant was used to pay for the new computers, windows and lighting in the hall.
Using the Pod’s resources
We used posters from the Pod, joined in with the Pod’s Switch-Off Fortnight campaign as a whole-school, and used their energy presentation in assembly.
Educational resources used
We encouraged people to take part in Earth Hour in 2010.
Measuring the impact
We were surprised that these measures had made such an impact and the 22% reduction in carbon emissions was our guide to achieving this. We are looking forward to receiving the energy monitor which is being distributed to schools.
That small measures make big differences!
We feel there are still further improvements to be made. Some of our radiators need thermostats and there are more windows that can be double glazed. These are longer term projects now that the DFCG has been cut so much.
The school investigated installing solar panels to take up the opportunity of the Governments Feed-In tariff, however, the set up costs and possible lack of grants combined with the potential budget cuts, meant that the project was too expensive for the time being.
Local Authority support
We had a grant to pay for a Willow Dome from West Sussex County Council.
We have taken part in competitions run by Arun District Council and won their Big Tidy Up trophy.