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Green Schools - Flying the flag for the environment

Green-Schools is an international programme which acknowledges and rewards schoolwide environmental education and action.

The programme in Ireland is managed by An Taisce and internationally (as Eco-Schools) by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE).

Green-Schools encourages long term education about environmental management. The programme involves students taking on roles of leadership and responsibility and this, along with activity-led teaching, generates a positive and enthusiastic response among the pupils. The pupils then take what they learn back to the wider community and the conservation message spreads.

Over 80% of Irish primary, secondary and special schools participate, making Ireland one of the most successful participants in the international programme.

The aim of Green-Schools is to increase students’ and participant awareness of environmental issues through classroom studies and to transfer this knowledge into positive environmental action in the school and also in the wider community. Schools that have successfully completed all the elements of the programme are awarded the ‘Green-Flag’. This award has now become a well-recognised Eco-Label. The award has to be renewed every two years.

MerrionStreet spoke with Anthony Purcell, Green Schools Manager at An Taisce, about the overall scheme. We then spoke with pupils and teachers from Our Lady's Girls National School in Ballinteer who have already been awarded four green flags.

More information can be found on the Green-Schools website