Student Environment Leadership: Waste Module

9 March 2021

Al Siraat students and staff continue working on accreditation to become a ResourceSmartSchool in the future. Managed by Sustainability Victoria, the RSS program provides practical support to reduce resource use and make cost savings, integrate sustainability into the curriculum and share learnings beyond our school gate.

Recently, two of our staff Sustainability Coordinators – Ms Tanya and Ms Noori – attended another Northern Metro Progress Workshop, run by CERES Environmental Park each term. The workshops focus on learning and practising ways to integrate sustainability across our College facilities, community and curriculum. An all staff training has also also been facilitiated by CERES this Friday afternoon as a whole school approach. We are very grateful to Jason Sheehan for his insightful presentation, wonderful support and inspiration.

Selected Year 5 – 10 students from our Student Representative Council (SRC) along the interfaith team and newly established Year 10 Environmental Club participated in a CERES’ led SELP Incursion (= Student Environmental Leadership Program) on Tuesday, 9 March.

During the workshop, the group of student leaders spent the day exploring what sustainability means to them and how they can help reduce waste in classrooms and on the school grounds. They learned about current environmental issues related to climate change, habitat and biodiversity loss, rising sea levels and pollution.

Part of the program included a "waste audit": Students collected and looked at the types of waste and litter found in the wheelie bins around the College. Most litter items could be categorised as general waste. However, students concluded that soft plastic is the most common waste at the College, a finding that needs attention and change to be reduced to zero waste.

Students worked in groups on action plans and discussed about different ways of how to reduce the current waste issues. The workshop concluded with the group exploring and learning how to recycle an old t-shirt into a bag and using newspaper as gardening pots to plant some fruits and vegetable seeds for the College garden.

Watch this space for updates on more student and staff-led programs and initiatives.