14 schools from Laois were awarded the Green Flag recently for their dedication to sustainability and protecting their environment.
Despite two school years with closures and challenges posed by COVID-19, 526 schools across Ireland were awarded Green Flags this week, including 33 schools that have been awarded the Green Flag for the first time.
Knockbeg College and Holy Family Senior School in Portlaoise were Laois’s first time recipients.
Ballyfin NS, Shanganamore NS, Camross NS, Gaelscoil Phortlaoise, Clough NS, Colaiste Iosagain, Clonaghadoo NS Joseph’s GNS in Mountmellick, Heywood CS, Portlaoise College, Scoil Molaise NS in Abbeyleix and Scoil Naomh Abban in Crettyard also received Green Flags.
Green-Schools is an environmental management programme for schools which focuses on themes including Litter and Waste; Energy; Water; Travel; Biodiversity; Global Citizenship and Marine Environment.
Speaking at each ceremony this week, Green-Schools Manager Cathy Baxter congratulated the 526 schools receiving their Green Flag.
She said: “We know that you have all been working incredibly hard in your schools over the last year and you continued to find innovative ways to keep the programme going during school closures and social distancing.
“You managed to have outdoor Committee meetings, online workshops and attending online webinars to keep up to date, so thank you.”
Schools were invited to six online award ceremonies which took place from Monday, October 4-8 with the final ceremony for the Water theme taking place on October 14.
At the ceremonies, schools enjoyed activities like Sea Shanties and online quizzes, with messages of support played from “Captain Climate”, actor Nicola Coughlan, champion cyclist Lara Gillespie and local authority Environmental Awareness Officers, who support schools during their participation in Green-Schools.