Green School Flag
St. Colmcille’s N.S. is proud to be a Green School!!
Green Schools Ireland is an environmental management and education programme for schools. It is a student- led initiative with an emphasis on the involvement of the wider school community. The programme is operated and coordinated by An Taisce with more localised support from our Louth County Council‘s Environmental Department.
Our Green School journey began in 2008/ 2009 as we set about working towards achieving our first Green Flag for Litter and Waste. This theme focuses on encouraging a sense of personal pride and responsibility in tackling the issues of litter and waste in our school and wider community.
We created many new initiatives for our school during this time to play our part in the reduction of litter and waste with the installation of a Bottle Bank, battery collection areas, compost area and regular litter- picking checks. The pupils took part in an annual National Spring Clean, keeping not just our school grounds clean and tidy, but also looking after our local beaches, church grounds and local hedge rows. We took part in our local Dunleer St. Patrick’s Day Parade, showcasing our amazing Recycling Projects as we marched proudly through the streets of Dunleer. The following year , we created a Samba Band for the Dunleer parade, with all instruments made from recyclable materials. We even designed and created the amazing Green School mural on at the front of our school, which can still be seen today to remind everyone of the important role we have to play in looking after the environment. We were extremely excited and proud to achieve our Litter and Waste Flag in 2009.
There are seven steps to be completed for each Green School theme, with each theme taking a minimum of two years to complete. The steps are as follows:
Step 1: Green School Committee ( made up of pupils and staff)
Step 2 : Environmental Review ( evaluate the starting point in order to identify actions required)
Step 3: Create an Action Plan
Step 4: Monitor and Evaluate your new initiatives and progress
Step 5: Curriculum Work
Step 6: Informing and Involving ( pupils, staff, parents and wider community)
Step 7: Green Code (create a Green Code for each new theme as a whole school)
From this wonderful starting point we continued our Green School journey over the next 10 years , working through the 7 steps for each theme and achieving additional Green Flags every two years. There has been a lot of hard work, determination and team- work required to get to where we are now as a Green School and past and present pupils have played a major role in our success.
Past pupils who have been members of our Green School Committees over the years have gone on to be heavily involved with environmental initiatives in Secondary Schools and beyond. This fills us with pride and encourages us to realise the importance of the programme and the positive impact it can have on our amazing pupils and their feeling of responsibility for the environment. We also have been so lucky to have had a huge amount of support and encouragement from parents, members of the community, local community groups and councillors.
We have now won five Green School Flags here in Tullydonnel!
2008/2009- Start of our Green School journey
2011- Litter and Waste Flag achieved
2013- Energy Flag achieved (reduced energy consumption and raised awareness of climate change.)
2015- Water Flag achieved (developed an awareness around water conservation and how to effectively mage this in our school.)
2017- Travel Flag achieved (raised awareness of the impact of our choice of travel on the environment and increased the number of pupils walking, cycling, car- pooling and using public transport for school.)
2019- Biodiversity Flag (achieved increased awareness in school of the importance of native plants, animals and habitats and how we can promote biodiversity in our school grounds.)
2020- We are continuing to raise awareness in all themes. We have a collection of sub-committees who help with the monitoring of different initiatives from the different themes. The Junior and Senior Infants with the help of First and Second Class pupils can be spotted regularly doing energy consumption checks and water usage checks .
Pupils in the older classes have been continuing to inform others of correct use of bins in the classroom and have created very useful posters for each class. The Wrens have been looking after the birds on their daily Welly Walk by keeping the bird- feeders stocked up.
Our First and Second Class have been planting vegetables in the classroom and our wonderful helpers Mrs. Butterly and our caretaker John have been preparing our planters and Veggie Village for our new seeds. Majority of our pupils continue to car- pool, walk and travel by bus.
These are just some of our Tullydonnell Green School Heroes and just some examples of the amazing team-work in our school and school community.
Her are just a few of the many memories we have made over the years as a Green School. For more, please visit us in school and enjoy our Green School Notice Board showcasing 10 years of memories.
MRS LADYBIRD – PART OF OUR VIBRANT GREEN SCHOOL MURAL AT THE FRONT OF OUR SCHOOL.
OUR BUG HOTEL- CREEPY CRAWLY CREEK
WE HAVE MANY IMPORTANT GUESTS RESIDING THERE!
WALK ON WEDNESDAY- FOR OUR TRAVEL FLAG
ONE OF OUR FANTASICALLY CREATIVE CLASS PROJECTS.
DELICIOUS ORGANIC PRODUCE FROM OUR VEGGIE GARDEN.
ONE OF OUR BIRD HOUSES TO HELP CARE FOR OUR NATIVE BIRDS.
SPOTTED BUTTERFLY ENJOYING OUR SAFE SANCTUARY.