Green is the new gold for Bell State School
BEING a part of the Eco Schools program was just the beginning of a journey to the top for students at Bell State School.
After being involved in the program for about 14 years, the school has had its efforts recognised to the highest level the program offers - and is the first Prep to Year 10 school in Australia to do so.
The school was awarded the Green Flag status, signifying that not only was its dedication to conservation and sustainability notable, but that a significant portion of the organising was carried out by students.
"For them to achieve the Green Flag, they had to actually run the meetings and the Eco Schools themselves,” said teacher aide Vicki McGuire.
"It was decided a couple of years ago that we would try and go for the Green Flag award, which is the highest level in the Eco Schools program.”
Tahleyah Fullagar, student and secretary for the program, said the win was an honour.
Chairperson and student William Green said when he found out about the achievement he felt excited and privileged.
"It's quite the achievement,” he said.
"Only two schools have achieved it before.”
It isn't time to rest on their laurels, though, as the status of a Green Flag school is reassessed every two years to ensure the school is still meeting the criteria and promoting the values of the program.
While they may have made it to the top, the journey was never about winning for the school.
"Now the students need to talk to other schools and even schools overseas,” said Mrs McGuire. "They can find out how those schools approach conservation and how they do their vegetable garden and what they do with their recycling.”
William said the plan from now on was to retain the award and keep the work going.
"Even as we leave the committee and new people come, we're going to make sure the Green Flag award stays with us,” he said.