St Kilda Primary School has a strong focus on sustainability and the environment. The school believes that it is not only important to teach students from a young age to take responsibility to create a sustainable future, but also to have a hands on approach by reducing, reusing and recycling and the environmental benefits that follow.
In May 2018 SKPS became a 5 Star accredited Sustainable Resource Smart School (an AuSSI Vic program/government initiative). This is the culmination of 9 years of work by the whole school community. Every day we integrate environmental sustainability into our daily operations and we are proud of the environment initiatives here at SKPS.
Take a look at what we have achieved or are currently doing to improve our grounds, and get inspired to help our school ….and our futures!
Our school is fortunate enough to have a beautiful green space providing a habitat to a range of animals including Tawny Frogmouths, birds, possums, bats, and invertebrates. We have established a number of different areas that allow our children to explore the different aspects of nature:
- Productive Garden – the Productive Garden forms a key part of the learning for all our children and allows them to experience first hand the joy of planting, growing and harvesting food.
- Nature Playground – this playground was built without any recognisable boundaries, which encourages children to explore, play together and create things from nature and their surroundings.
In 2012 we installed a 12kW solar system on one of the buildings (63 panels, 190W each), and we are currently investigating options to install an additional 230 high efficiency panels to increase our system to 60kW.
In June 2015 we replaced 460 indoor and outdoor lights with LED lighting, and we are running a switch off program in the classrooms to decrease our energy consumption even further.
2017 was dedicated to the water and the energy module in the Resource Smart School Program. Our Year 4 students undertook an energy audit to understand in more detail how we can decrease our energy consumption. Our next goal is to install more motion sensors throughout the school.
Many inspiring waste projects have been implemented at our school and below is a small list of some of our amazing projects:
- Nude food – we encourage all children to bring unpackaged food to school
- School recycling depot
- Penguin Project – Save theBay through up-cycling
- Zero Waste Fete – since 2013 we aim for ‘zero waste’ at our big event held every 2 years
We are part of the Schools Water Efficiency (SWEP) program and have installed water loggers to track our water usage. This has helped us find leaks, save water and promote water education at our school. In addition we have the following:
- Water tanks have been installed for the oval, toilets and our productive garden, which is on a drip system to minimise evaporation
- All toilets are dual flush and every new tap installed at the school are slow release
- A mint tap garden (below) has been built underneath one of our bubblers. The garden is built from recycled materials and sits underneath drinking taps to catch the excess water.
Resource Smart Schools
We joined Resource Smart School Program in 2013 and achieved accreditation for the core module in 2015. In 2016 we were awarded our 2nd and 3rd star for biodiversity and waste and won the Resource Smart School award for waste. The 4th star for energy followed in 2017 and in 2018 we received our last star for water and are now the 1st school in Port Phillip Council and the 50th school in Victoria to have reached 5 stars.