New College School has always been involved with the welfare of the community it serves and recognises the importance of environmental issues. The issues around climate change affect the whole curriculum. Pupils need to understand the issues from educational and social perspectives in the interests of everyone’s future. We promote sustainability through the following:
- Developing the capacities of all members of the school community to promote the understanding of the principles of sustainability.
- Developing an ethos of sustainability through our pupil eco-committee.
- Having an NCS eco code which we share through electronic and non-electronic means including notice boards and newsletters.
- Producing a termly magazine (The Eco-nomist) which promotes the work of the eco committee and news stories relating to ecology, the environment and sustainability.
- Taking part in national and international programmes to support and enhance the work of the eco committee (e.g. Switch off Fortnight).
- Encouraging our pupils to take their ideas home and share them with their family and friends.
- Aiming to provide pupils with knowledge, skills and understanding in biodiversity and sustainability, by embedding the topics within many areas of our curriculum.
- Promoting car-sharing, public transport, walking and cycling to and from school to pupils, parents and staff.
- Encouraging the use of bikes by promoting safe cycling and secure cycle storage.
- Developing a bus route to help reduce the number of cars on Oxford’s roads.
- Reviewing the School Travel Plan on a regular basis.
- Maintaining respect for natural resources by teaching and encouraging the most efficient use of materials and by using renewable, recycled and recyclable products wherever possible.
- Encouraging staff, students and parents to recycle as much waste as possible, in school and at home.
- Facilitating recycling in school by having collection points for batteries and old stationery and recycling print cartridges.
- Installing a recycling station in the playground alongside a food waste container.
- Reducing our use of single-use plastics, for example by encouraging boys to bring in their own water bottles and by installing water fountains at various locations around the school site.
- Installing hand dryers in staff and pupil toilets to reduce the use of paper towels.
- Installing secondary glazing in our older school buildings.
- Using LED bulbs in over half the lights in school and continuing to replace old bulbs with more energy efficient options.
- Installing thermostats throughout the school.
- Installing insulation in our new buildings (cavity wall, ceiling).
- Insulating our hot water pipes.
- Ensuring that we pursue a policy of best practice, local purchasing and the use of environmentally friendly products (including recycled stationery), where possible.
- Encouraging pupils to purchase eco-friendly stationery from our NCS eco shop. For example: scissors with corn-starch handles; at least 90% of the highlighter cap and barrel of our highlighter pens are made from renewable resources (83% post-consumer plastics such as used yoghurt pots or watering cans); our notebooks are made from made from 100% post-consumer recycled paper and board.
- Buying from local fruit and vegetable suppliers.
- Purchasing free range eggs and organic meat as much as possible.
- Ensuring that the NCS grounds are maintained to a high standard and are as litter free as possible. Our Eco-committee carries out litter picks of the playground and grounds.
- Monitoring gas, water and electricity and seek to reduce usage. For example, the eco committee monitor readings during national campaigns such as “Switch off Fortnight”.
- Promoting biodiversity through the introduction of a bug hotel and increasing the variety of plants in the school grounds, including in the school pond.