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School is a place of discovery where we learn about our world and the range of possibilities ahead.

A water tanks at a school

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There's a range of ways schools can get involved to take practical action to save money, energy and water. Activities can include real life learning opportunities inside and outside the classroom, alongside changes to a school's management of resources and facilities including waste, water, energy, and biodiversity. Programs that engage students, teachers, parents and staff in making changes together is a great way to make lasting changes.

The possibilities and opportunities for schools are enormous and there is a range of excellent programs and resources available to help teachers and students get things underway.

Tackling one topic area at a time (such as energy) means learning and curriculum activities and school management changes combine to result in greater overall educational and savings benefits for schools.

  • To get started on waste issues you could conduct a waste audit to identify current sources and ways to reduce waste, including composting and recycling bins or starting a worm farm to eat up organic waste and establishing a sustainable, edible garden.
  • To get started on energy issues you could conduct energy efficiency audits to identify current energy use and ways to save, including installing energy efficiency measures like energy-efficient lighting, solar power systems, or shade awnings and ceiling fans as well as ensuring good habits such as turning equipment off when not in use.
  • To get started on water issues you could conduct a water audit to identify current use and ways to reduce use, including placing signs above taps and bubblers, and installing rainwater tanks or greywater systems.
  • Your school may be eligible for funding under the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program for school gardens and kitchens.

Most states and territories have a range of energy, water, waste and biodiversity programs to provide practical support to schools and their communities to live and work more sustainably and can help your school get started. See our resources section below.

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