Sustainability Policy

March 2021


RATIONALE

Maryborough Education Centre recognises that the physical environment is integral to the quality of our student’s lives. At MEC we believe “Little changes can make a big Difference”. We endeavour to reduce our ecological footprint through adopting sustainable practices in our everyday lives.

PURPOSE

Our sustainable journey will involve the whole school community taking an active role in caring, learning, promoting and developing lifelong sustainable practices and empowering students to become future leaders.

VALUES

MEC is committed to:

  • promoting respect and an appreciation for the natural environment
  • fostering children’s capacity to understand and respect the natural environment and the interdependence between people, plants, animals and the land
  • supporting the development of positive attitudes and values in line with sustainable practices
  • ensuring that educators and other staff engage in sustainable practices during the operation of school service.

Scope

This policy applies to the whole school.

objectives

  • To incorporate and introduce all recycling streams across the school.
  • To minimise waste produced by the entire school and increase the percentage of material that is reused, recycled and composted.
  • Drive us to further reduce our Energy Waste and Water requirements and increase Biodiversity of our school environment, by planting more indigenous species and increasing habitat for local wildlife.
  • To obtain a 5 star Sustainable energy rating for MEC.
  • To reduce the amount of energy used by the school through smarter practices and greater efficiency as well as using carbon neutral energy sources, such as solar panelling.
  • Student Sustainable Leadership Group.
  • To use sustainable material wherever possible such as Seating, Screening, Fencing, biodegradable packaging.

broad guidelines

Maryborough Education Centre will implement a hands-on approach to minimise our footprint in the school grounds and surrounding bush area. This will be achieved by implementing nude food days, correct recycling, composting and cardboard and paper bins. Introducing Clean up Australia Day, National Tree Day, end of lunch clean ups, environmental monitors etc.

active coordinators

implementation

The following strategies will be incorporated into the regular practises of our school community and apply to all students across the school.

Waste

  • To minimise waste by using systems such as recycling and composting (e.g. rubbish free lunches, recycling bins, worm food bucket, chook food bucket, compost buckets, Clean Up Australia Day)
  • To strive for and maintain litter-free school grounds
  • To introduce nude food days into the school one day a term
  • To develop in-house recycling programs such as paper/cardboard, co-mingled materials, printer cartridges, E-Waste, recycle pick up or taken to transfer station
  • Avoid the use of paper wherever possible for example sending information via emails or XUNO

Energy

  • To use resources and equipment as efficiently as possible.
  • To choose the most appropriate energy saving methods available such as sensor lights, blinds, switching off unused lighting and heating, and having appliances that are 4 star plus energy rating.
  • To continue the WALK2School and Ride2School program that promotes sustainable transport and healthy lifestyle practices.

Biodiversity

  • To continue to increase biodiversity in our school grounds.
  • To plant more indigenous plants in the school grounds and participate in National Tree Day annually.
  • To continue to have yard clean ups and litter management, such as eating inside, designated outside eating areas, No Food on the Oval, nude food days.

Water

  • To involve the whole school community in the planning of water conservation and storm water quality initiatives.
  • To use resources and equipment as efficiently as possible.
  • To continue to use effective means of conserving water such as water tanks for flushing toilets, filters on bubble taps to encourage students to drink from them.
  • To choose the most appropriate water saving methods such as water tanks, water friendly gardens, and having appliances that are 3 star plus.
  • Regularly maintain facilities, such as blocked storm water, leaking taps, toilets etc.

Green purchasing

  • To develop a “green purchasing” program where economically viable (products and services that minimise negative environmental impacts).
  • To use more environmentally friendly products (e.g. stationary, toilet paper, bin liners, take away packaging, tissues, cleaning products).
  • To purchase fair trade products where possible (e.g. sport equipment, coffee, tea, sustainable packaging).
  • To purchase seating for around the school grounds.
  • To purchase 100% recycled paper for printers and photocopiers.

MEC will seek to promote sustainable practices throughout the community including liaising with the Central Goldfields Shire about implementation processes.

evaluation

This policy will be reviewed as part of the school’s annual review cycle in accordance with “Resourcesmart AuSSi Vic” criteria and strategies.

This policy was last ratified by School Council on Wednesday 31st March, 2021