The Royal Hospital School and Deben Travel are continuing a collaboration, which started pre-Covid, to plant a significant number of trees over the next three years.
CARING FOR OUR ENVIRONMENT
“To cultivate a global outlook and environmental responsibility” is one of the core educational aims of the School.
Members of our pupil-led Eco Committee are the driving force behind behavioural change; their aim is to influence behaviours of pupils and staff as well as educating them on resource efficiency topics and to champion the sustainable ethos to them and their wider circle of families, friends and future employers. Each boarding and day house has representatives on the Eco Committee that are empowered to give advice and direction to their peers. Information is also relayed to Senior House Staff to enable them to facilitate and encourage behavioural change. Each academic year the committee run projects to engage the school community.
All staff receive environmental awareness training and new pupils routinely have an introduction to the Estates Department at the beginning of every academic year as part of PSHE lessons. This gives them an appreciation of where their water and heating come from, how waste is managed, what resources are used, and what work goes on behind the scenes to make the school run.
GOLD CARBON CHARTER 2019
In 2019, RHS was awarded a Gold Carbon Charter by Suffolk County Council for its work to reduce its overall carbon footprint by 35% since 2010. Particular savings were made in the utilities: water usage down 54%, heating oil usage down 41%, and electricity down 26%. A comprehensive metering and monitoring system was put in place in 2012 which identified areas for improvement. This works alongside an increasingly sophisticated Building Management System which more accurately controls energy use.
Our Eco Committee has reinvigorated our paper waste recycling programme by modernising our rather tired looking recycling posters. Boxes have also been distributed to each House to collect scrap paper so that it can be repurposed or recycled.
Inspired by the theme of this year's National Poetry Day and the collaboration with Greenpeace this year, the English Department held a poetry competition titled 'Poems for the Planet.' In their English classes, pupils discussed their understanding of the environment and the current threats and dangers it faces. We looked at poems such as 'Night Music' and 'To the River Stour' to inspire our own writing.
Georgie Stammers, Year 12, has seen her eco-initiative come to fruition this week. With strong eco values and a desire to make a difference to her environment, she approached the Headmaster to ask if she could write to parents about turning their car engines off whilst waiting in the school car parks, which she did.
This week COP27 is taking place, discussing the increasingly urgent need to take action to tackle climate change and to protect our environment. Discussions in Egypt perhaps feels a long way from here and from our sphere of influence, but we can all do our part in conserving our own part of the environment.
Our Marketing Department has made some significant changes in its approach to buying promotional materials, with products now only procured with sustainability in mind.