Schools and anti-littering…

Schools in Leeds are doing lots of work around anti-littering around their school and the neighbourhood they live in. Here are just three examples…

Westwood Primary School
A groundbreaking anti-litter project has been branded a great success and is now set to be rolled out across all schools in Middleton and Belle Isle over the next three years.

Acting on feedback from her community, Councillor Kim Groves (Labour, Middleton Park) arranged to set up the ‘Love where you live’ campaign, based upon the national Keep Britain Tidy scheme.

A team of council officers from the Environmental Action Team go into local schools and encourage children to take part in the anti-litter message. So far they have worked with children from Westwood Primary, with immediate results in and around the school. As a part of the project, children took part in a competition to design the new anti-litter sign for the Westwoods Estate. The winning ‘Don’t be a litter bug’ entry is now in place.

Cllr Groves said: “It has been a real community effort and I want to particularly praise the officers from our local Environmental Action Team for their dedication and results with our children at Westwood Primary. I wish them luck and every success with the other schools in Middleton and Belle Isle.

“In these times, when we are trying to make less money go further, this scheme is a great example of how officers can work with all in the community to enhance local neighbourhoods.”

 Dave Fisher of the council’s  envornmental services locality team) said: “The amount of effort the children have put into this project has been amazing. The standard of work by the children was really impressive, and the decision to pick a winner was extremely hard. In the end we went with the ‘Don’t be a litter bug’ poster, but really all of the entries from the children were fantastic. Given the success of the project, this is definitely something that we would like to extend to other schools in our community.”

Love Where You Live is a campaign that aims to inspire, encourage and enable local residents to make where they live, work and play the kind of place they really want it to be. It’s about local people making a difference, whether as individuals, groups, local authorities or companies. Westwood Primary School’s ‘love where you live’ project was also visited by Hilary Benn MP.

Beeston Primary School

Pupils at Beeston Primary School took part in a fun filled eco-week just before half term to re-invigorate their commitment to the environment. Already keen recyclers, staff and pupils launched themselves into five days of green-themed tasks to re-launch their school-wide recycling efforts.

Their week kicked off with a visit from one of the council’s locally based community environment officers who spoke to pupils from all year groups about the importance of looking after and respecting their surroundings. Following the visit, pupils conducted a census of rubbish in the area surrounding the school and collected thirty bags of litter. Their litter pick extended to the local park too.

Classes then rolled their sleeves up to take part in a variety of environmentally friendly activities: year one pupils made hats and handbags out of junk; year two pupils got to grips with how to dispose of litter properly; year three pupils made roman costumes out of junk; and year six pupils delved into the world of renewable energy.

Councillor Mark Dobson, executive member for the environment said: “The enthusiasm of everyone at the school has bowled me over. Reducing our impact on the local environment needs everyone to be aware of that impact and to take action where appropriate. Fun and informative events like these educate children about the positive things they and their families can do to ensure a sustainable environment for the future. I’m pleased that they are setting such a great example to others.”

Chris Lees, headteacher at Beeston primary school said: “The pupils are very much aware of the need to recycle and conserve energy and they play a really active role within the school. The aim of the week was to harness their enthusiasm and make sure their positive outlook has a benefit on our local community.”

School Children Join Residents and Council Staff to Clean Beeston Streets

On Thursday 14 March pupils at Park View Primary Academy once again took part in the South Leeds Community Alliance Big Community Clean Up – ‘Love Beeston, Clean Beeston’ Campaign.  The ‘clean up hour’ covered the streets on Harlech Road, Woodview Road, Harlech Avenue and the area around the school.

There was a great turnout for the latest community clean as about twenty local people teamed up with thirty pupils, parents and teachers from Park View Primary Academy (formerly Cross Flatts Park Primary School) and staff from the Council’s street cleansing team.

Gohar Almass from the South Leeds Community Alliance and Councillor Mohammed Iqbal both spoke briefly before the clean up started. Gohar Almass said: “If everybody took responsibility for picking up litter on the pavement outside their house we would have the clean neighbourhood to be proud of.”

Cllr Iqbal said: “It’s great to see the children taking part. You are the future, tell your brothers and sisters and your parents why it’s important to pick up litter.”

The clean ups will continue every Thursday, tackling a different street each week. The idea is to encourage everyone to take responsibility and do their bit. The clean ups will show them what their street could look like every day if they stopped dropping litter.

To tie in with the clean up, eight households on Harlech Road were sent letters from the Council encouraging them to make use of the skips available yesterday to clear the rubbish from their gardens. If they don’t clear their garden of rubbish legal enforcement action would be taken by Leeds City Council.

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