The national curriculum offers numerous chances to explore environmental and sustainability issues and so schools have a great opportunity not just to engage with staff on the issue, but also with pupils. By explaining how energy usage equates to the school’s carbon footprint and therefore the environment, will help students to buy into what the school is trying to achieve. Each class could have nominated ‘energy monitors’ whose role it is to ensure that lights and electrical equipment are switched off when classrooms are not in use or to switch off taps if they are left running.
Schools use a lot of electrical office and ICT equipment. Remember that anything left on standby continues to use power and a single computer and monitor left on all day costs about £45 a year. Multiply that figure by all your office and ICT items and you can see how the costs soon stack up. Turn off your equipment completely or invest in a cheap plug-in seven-day timer.
Regardless of the age of pupils, there is plenty of scope for them to get involved. All pupils could design posters and stickers about energy wastage, energy usage could be part of a maths lesson, climate change could be discussed in geography and you could even have a competition to see which class or year group is the most energy efficient and then reward best in class at the end of the school year.