Bayswater School has been an Enviroschool since 2003. We were one18 schools around the Auckland region to receive the first awards to be handed out as part of a national sustainability programme called Enviroschools. Sustainability is a key to our longevity. We integrate the five guiding principles in all learning and action that we undertake. Education for Sustainability has gathered in strength over the past ten years to whole school learning and community involvement. Curriculum driven learning has provided the foundation for all sustainable environmental practices at Bayswater School. We are all encouraged to nurture people and nature now and in the future. We want to all leave Bayswater School with lifelong learning skills and beliefs that will help to maintain a healthy, environment, culture, society and economy.
In June 2007 we received a Silver Enviro School Award and in 2011 a Green-Gold Enviro School Award. A Green-Gold Reflection involving the whole school, including the staff, tamariki, whānau and Board of Trustees, as well as representatives for Nau Mai ki Enviroschools was carried out in 2017 to confirm our Green-Gold status.
From 2008 we have been very fortunate to be part of Genesis Energy's Schoolgen Programme; a huge and exciting step forward in our sustainable future action plan. From the arrival of our solar panels in 2008, the school has incorporated learning about renewable energy and energy conservation into more general learning. Monitoring how much electricity we are generating and consuming helps us think about energy efficiency and conservation.
Running in conjunction with Enviroschools ethos is Travelwise. We have a well supported Walking School Bus Programme as well as a large number of children who come to school in a sustainable way.
We are also part of the Paper4trees’ Programme which means we reduce our paper waste by using GOOS (good on one side) paper and recycling paper that has been used on both sides.
Regular wai care monitoring at a local stream, as well as biannual beach cleanups are other sustainable practices of which we are proud.
Rubbish free lunches are a norm at Bayswater School and on occasions some classes may achieve more than 90% rubbish free lunch boxes.
Clothes’ shares are a regular seasonal event at Bayswater School. All donations of clean, good quality clothing are collected from whānau and displayed. Everyone is welcome. No money is exchanged!
Whole school annual beach cleanups is a sustainable community activity of which we are proud. Bayswater School began beach clean ups through the Care for our Coast programme when it was offered to schools all over New Zealand as part of environmental awareness education. The school covered an extensive area including Ngataringa Bay, Narrow Neck beach and O'Neill's Point Cemetery. The school community now shares this community action with other local schools run by the Devonport Peninsula Trust. Our school has been allocated to the Ngataringa Bay area.
At Bayswater School we respect and celebrate diversity. We have acknowledged the unique gifts, contributions and perspectives of individuals and groups through Learning Pathways and now Learning Adventures.
Likewise the principle of Māori Perspectives is honoured and sustained through everyday use of the language, stories kapa haka and celebration of Matariki with a community supported hangi or boil up which brings the whole school community together.
Since the beginning of our enviroschool journey, we have participated in community planting. As participants with ‘Trees for Survival’, we planted trees in O’Neills cemetery Reserve. Since the initial planting, there have been occasions when Whānau Wai and Whānau Kokoru children have continued to plant trees in this location. In 2020, Bayswater School signed up for the Ádopt a Park school programme which will see more planting in the local area by Bayswater tamariki and their whānau.
We are proud to be an Enviroschool and the Enviroschool guiding principles are embedded in our everyday practice, learning and community involvement. Empowered Students participate in a meaningful way in the life of Bayswater School. It is this empowerment which has children organise events like thermals for Nepal and a bake sale to support our World Vision child. With teaching and learning as our key focus, we endeavour to encourage more innovative ideas which may be pursued by the school or a group of students in the years to follow.