Enterprising Pupils Give Waste the Push

Final preparations are underway for Changeworks’ Make Waste History Summit, 19 June 2012, bringing together 50 pupils and 12 teachers from Edinburgh secondary schools to put the lid on waste.

This year’s summit being held in Portobello aims to give pupils skills, inspiration and ideas to creatively crack Waste Minimisation, one of the Eco Schools Green Flag topics. Workshops for pupils and teachers cover practical topics, such as how to be a social reporter, carrying out a waste audit to action and what you need for a successful eco committee.

Ownership of a school’s green activities is for the most part in the hands of eco team pupils. The Summit promotes behaviours to produce good results: being proactive, decision making, solutions orientated and taking action. Portobello High School is this year’s Summit host and particularly fitting as they’re celebrating their 10th anniversary of being awarded the Eco Schools Green Flag.

Sophie Bigg, Geography teacher and Eco Schools Co-ordinator said:- “Pupils were saying to me just today that it’s great to have such a high profile event like the Waste Summit happening at the school.

“We’ve found tackling waste very difficult for a large schools like ours. Shock tactics can work but you also need new ideas and inspiration. For us, sharing good practice is the best part. We get to meet with other people with similar struggles and hear how they’ve overcome eco challenges. Valuable and sustainable campaigns can come out of big events such as the Summit. We’re particularly proud that delegates from our link school in Kenya will be here to take part. They’re here as part of our work on Citizenship and sustainability is part of that. It’s a fantastic way for them to see what we do to tackle waste in Scotland.”

Photos Helen Pugh

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