Sustainability Guidelines

Sustainability Guidelines
St Clare’s Primary School
Care for the environment represents a challenge for all humanity. It is a common and universal duty, that of respecting a common good, destined for all, by preventing anyone from using with impunity the different categories of beings, whether living or inanimate – animals, plants, the natural elements – simply as one wishes, according to one’s own economic needs.
(John Paul II Homily in Val Visdende, Italy, par 466 of the Compendium of The Social Doctrine of the Church, 2004.)
Stewardship is a key element of the spirituality of the Archdiocese of Brisbane and is embedded in the Brisbane Catholic Education Guidelines for the Religious Life of the School and Strategic Renewal Framework. Care for the environment in which the school is located is a critical strategy motivated by this ministry of stewardship.
Through personal conversion and Catholic Social Teaching:
We Teach by encouraging and supporting Eco-Literacy within learning and teaching programs and professional learning
We Challenge by embedding and aligning the principles of sustainability and environmental stewardship within renewal processes
We Transform by promoting personal and communal ecological conversion and establishing community partnerships
The school approach will take steps to endeavour to:
  1. Create a climate for change;
  2. Engage and enable the whole community; and
  3. Implement and sustain the transformation.
Over time, St Clare’s Primary School will develop a School Environmental Management Plan (SEMP). The SEMP will flow from the school’s Vision Statement and from the formation of a Sustainability Steering Committee. It would be the on-going task of this group to map the progress of the integration of the school’s sustainability goals in the areas of the Learning Processes, Ethical Resource Use, Grounds Care, Community Relationships, Spiritual and Religious Practices. It is a management tool for implementing the values and beliefs of the school, for putting into effect the school’s Ecological Sustainability Policy.
These endeavours will include planning for the following:
Water: Rainwater to be harvested for use in toilets, gardens and permaculture programs. On site stormwater management would be an occasion for the school to understand the impact it has on its catchment from gross pollutants, turbidity, hydrocarbons, heavy metals, and e coli. The school’s SEMP will address how the school can minimise these.
Energy: The school’s SEMP should mandate that energy efficient appliances be purchased and maintained into the future. The school’s SEMP would address how it uses energy whether that is electricity or gas or even wind or solar generated electricity over time. The school should access grants where available to support installation of solar systems.
Waste: Planning for secure waste bins and a community health and well-being program that minimises wrappings will in turn minimise scavenger wildlife and animals and encourage more native wildlife on the school site e.g. ibis and crows replace honey eating native birds because of access to food scraps. These waste bins could be themed according to recycling materials as part of a whole of school approach to managing waste systems.
Greening and Biodiversity: A vegetation / landscaping plan will be developed in concert with the master planning process to ensure native trees, bushes, and groundcovers are maximised and exotic species limited to ensure increased biodiversity of bird and insect life. In time the school SEMP would further the planting for biodiversity started in Stage One.
Health and Wellbeing: As part of the development of a healthier eating focus within the school and with linkages to school programs, the school tuckshop/cafeteria can model behaviours and food menu design and influence student choices for healthier options. For the school to maximise this opportunity within such a facility, it would also need to undertake a wide ranging process of consultation and education with students, parents and staff regarding nutrition and diet so that the cafeteria menus are driven from best practice, particularly as articulated in Queensland Government Tuckshop Guidelines.
Transport: Master planning for secure bike storage for student bikes is important to partner with local government plans for integrated bikeways across the community.
Approved Guidelines Published 25th February 2016