At Brannel we prepare our students for life in modern Britain by equipping them to be responsible, respectful, active citizens who contribute positively to society.
As a school we are doing our bit to help address climate change. In collaboration with all the other secondary schools across Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly we have drawn up a Green Charter for Schools. We hope that this will be driven by students through our Eco-Council and as part of the Brannel Challenge.
The charter has two over-arching aims:
As educators, we are committed to teach our young people to be environmentally literate and to develop their knowledge, skills, motivation and confidence to practice and promote sustainability in their community.
As organisations, we are committed to ensure any decisions we make about our working practice take into account the impact on the environment, with the aim of adopting sustainable practices wherever possible.
To achieve our aims, we have agreed to do the following:
- Collectively declare a climate emergency in September 2019.
- Attend the 2019 Cornwall Schools’ Eco-Conference and any subsequent conferences.
- Gain Eco-School status within two years, then maintain it thereafter.
- Significantly reduce the use of single-use plastic with the aim of becoming ‘plastic free’.
- Create a garden, pond, orchard, vegetable plot, bee hive and/or farm on site.
- Promote the benefits of eating less meat and aim to have a regular meat-free day.
- Engage with parents & the local community to promote sustainable action in the home.
- Engage with another school (nationally or internationally) about action in schools.
- Support Cornwall Council’s aim to become carbon neutral where possible by reducing energy consumption by at least 10%, using some form of renewable energy source on site and buying energy from renewable suppliers.
- Explore ways to lessen the impact of petrol and diesel vehicles on the environment.
Declaration of Climate Emergency
On Friday 20th September 2019, Brannel School, in collaboration with all secondary schools in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, formally agreed to declare a climate emergency. The climate emergency is the biggest challenge facing our planet and future generations. To have a significant impact we need to do more than make symbolic statements – we need to turn warm words into impactful actions. We have made a commitment to the Green Charter for Schools and we will do all that we can to achieve its aims.
The Eco Patch – coming soon in 2020!
We are currently working with innovative local architects Märraum on designs for a school farm and outdoor learning classroom.
‘The Eco Patch’, as it has been named, will inject new life into learning outdoors. The development includes a new classroom and miniature smallholding with chickens, ducks, pygmy goats and other small animals.
Chris Liles, Headteacher, said “The Eco-Patch is a pathfinder. It will be an inspirational space which joins up the delivery of complimentary programmes for animal care, outdoor learning, health and wellbeing, and environmental education in order to maximise the learning potential of our environment and our pupils.
“We believe that outdoor learning is at its most potent when it is interwoven within the formal school curriculum. Taking the curriculum outside will have a positive impact on attainment, increase engagement, and enable the development of a wide range of skills including problem solving, communication and resilience.
“By encouraging interaction with the environment and developing a sense of identity and pride in their local environment and community, our aim is to enrich the local and global environmental awareness of young people.”
The building, designed by Penryn-based architects Marraum, has been designed with a sustainable ethos in mind in both materiality and form. There will be timber decking around the new buildings and raised beds for planting. Despite potential delays caused by the Covid-19 lockdown, we are still hopeful that the Eco Patch will be completed for the start of the new school year in September.