As you may be aware Perry Hall is a Green Flag school and we are proud of the environmental initiatives we have worked on in recent years. Sustainability is a key thread that runs through our whole school curriculum and children from EYFS to Year 6 learn about the environmental issues our world is facing today. Our aim is to empower the next generation to act for sustainability – in their personal lives, within their community and also at a global scale, now and in the future.
I addition to curriculum learning, Perry Hall has an Eco Committee – democratically elected representatives from Years 1-6 whose role is to champion green issues throughout the school – and a Go Green Club. During the last school year, the Go Green Club and Eco Committee began working on a project to reduce air pollution in the area around the school. The Go Green Club designed flyers and the Eco Committee organised a banner design competition.
Air pollution is the biggest environmental threat to health in the UK and particularly affects the most vulnerable in society: children and older people, and those with heart and lung conditions. Children are still developing their organs and immune systems and their smaller bodies and airways make them especially vulnerable to dirty air. Because of their size, children are also often closer to sources of air pollution, like car exhausts, than adults. Air pollution can play a part in causing asthma for some children. For children who already have asthma, being exposed to more air pollution can increase how bad their symptoms are and how often they have chronic symptoms.
During out project last year, air pollution levels have been measured outside the school building (in the school grounds and various locations nearby) in order to inform decision making and best approaches to take in order to reduce air pollution. Through our investigation we have been able to identify the main causes of air pollution around school, and to test out different methods to reduce the pollution levels in school. We are fortunate that the air quality monitoring we have conducted at the school has shown levels are significantly below guidelines set by UK Government and the World Health Organisation. However, there isn't really a "safe level" when considering air pollution and we should strive to do everything we can to continuously improve the environmental conditions at the school.
The Eco Committee and Go Green Club have explored proactive actions we can take as a community to reduce these pollutants - one of the main ones being reducing car usage, which is one of the biggest sources of pollution at Perry Hall school. There are two key ways parents/carers can help:
At school we can also filter some of the pollution from the air. We are therefore planning on raising money to purchase air purifiers for each classroom and to install green screens around some of the perimeter of the school.
Our plan is to fundraise for both the air filters and the green screens through a crowd funding page, local business sponsorship and, when Covid allows, class sponsored fund raising events.
Thank you in advance for your support. Together we can ensure that Perry Hall is as environmentally safe as possible for our children.
Mrs Richards and Miss Jordan-Connelly