Out of the 32 London boroughs Merton is ranked in the top three for having a significant number of schools achieving Eco-School status.
Coming third from top, 30 of Merton’s 67 schools (44.8%) have won eco-school awards and have committed to making their schools more sustainable.
To achieve eco-school status the school must first register on the eco-schools website http://www.eco-schools.org. They then commit to taking environmental action on issues including saving energy, using renewable energy sources, clearing litter, minimising the waste generated by their school and saving water.
Administered by ENCAMS in England – the environmental charity which campaigns to keep Britain tidy – Eco-schools is an international award programme that guides schools on their sustainable journey and provides a framework to help embed sustainable principles into the heart of school life. Schools achieving environmental excellence can win bronze, silver or the prestigious Green Flag Award.
Merton Council Cabinet Member for the Environment, Councillor David Simpson said: “Merton can be really proud of this achievement. Environmental sustainability is clearly a priority at a national level, but we can make such a difference at a local level too. Taking part in the Eco-Schools programme is one way we can improve our environment and so make Merton a cleaner place for residents. Central government wants every school to be sustainable by 2020 and I want to see every school in Merton work towards Eco-school status.”
Deputy Head teacher of three-times Green Flag winning school Dundonald Primary School, Mr Gary Bennell said: ‘Improving children’s understanding of the human impact upon the environment is essential in creating aware and responsible adults of the future. The Eco-Schools initiative is a good vehicle to support this. We are really thrilled to have been awarded the green flag for a third time but it is really down to the enthusiasm and work of the children and teachers that keep it on the agenda and in the curriculum.’
Notes to editors
This year alone, nine schools in Merton received awards: two bronze, four silver and two green flags. The schools are as follows:
All Saints C of E Primary – 1st Green Flag
Beecholme Primary – Bronze
Dundonald – 3rd Green Flag
Harris Academy – Silver
Hollymount – Bronze
Merton Abbey – Silver
Priory C of E School – Silver
St Teresa’s – Silver
Ursluline High School – Bronze
The additional 21 schools which have Eco-school status are: Aragon Primary School; Bond Primary School; Cranmer Primary School; Haslemere Primary School; Hillcross Primary School; Holy Trinity Primary School; Joseph Hood Primary School; Liberty School; Lonesome Primary School; Malmesbury Primary School; Morden Primary School; Pelham Primary School; Poplar Primary School; Rutlish School; Sacred Heart Primary School; SMART Centre; St John Fisher RC Primary; St Matthew’s CE Primary School; St Matthews CE Primary School; Stanford Primary School; Wimbledon High School and Wimbledon Park Primary School.