Skip to content
Home » Sustainable schools » Sustainable schools – act now

Sustainable schools – act now

Make the everyday running of your school more sustainable with these tips and resources.

School Culture and Policies

Ensure green thinking permeates everything your school does. Includes useful case studies.


Ideas to improve the carbon impact of your school’s energy usage – while also cutting your bills.

Green Spaces

Make the most of the green space you have by boosting their value for nature and enhancing biodiversity.


Change the food you serve and grow at your school

Waste & Recycling

Reduce, reuse and recycle to save money and waste.

Greener Travel

Thinking about how staff and students can better travel to school.

Pupils at Crabtree Infants washing up their reuse-able milk cups

School Culture and Policies

At the foundation of any sustainable school is a culture of “eco” that permeates management, teaching, students and PTA.

  • Create a staff member Sustainability Lead role. Consider the same for the governing body.
  • Make a Sustainability Policy for your school’s students and staff to work towards
  • Talk about Climate change with students and teachers. We have plenty of resources in our Educate Now section. Ensure it permeates the curriculum.
  • Join in with local organisations and campaigns listed on our Join Now page, including our own Schools Networking Events and SustFest Schools Week.
  • Book a visitor to your school. Sustainable St Albans Climate Champions are available to give talks in assembly or to Year groups. Contact
  • Use the Transform Our World Climate Action Planner tool which is designed to help everyone in the school community understand the issues surrounding the climate crisis and what they can do to take action to reduce your school’s carbon footprint.
  • Set up a student eco group. Consider working towards an award such as a Green Flag Award from Eco Schools.
  • Consider sharing these resources on ‘eco-friendly’ fundraising with your PTA
  • Consider sharing our template PTA sustainability policy with your PTA
  • Ecosia – why not switch your school search engines to default to this one that plants trees for every search made.

Useful Case Studies

Energy & Electricity

  • Calculate your school’s Carbon footprint using online UK government resources
  • Look at the Energy in Schools website: a helpful tool aid for schools to be more energy aware and reduce their energy, whilst giving the opportunity for pupils to use BBC micro:bit technology to solve problems.
  • See where your school’s heat is escaping by borrowing a thermal imaging camera from Sustainable St Albans. Children love to use these too: see what Sandringham school and Killigrew School did when they borrowed one. Beaumont School used the camera to check their recently installed windows, and heat losses from other doors and windows. To borrow the Community Camera (available for week+ loans, for free) contact the Harpenden Camera Team directly at 
  • Simple changes like switching off lights and turning off whiteboards can have a big impact across the whole school.

Green Spaces

Food & Diet

  • Join Meat Free Mondays and try their impact calculator, where you can find out your impact on animals, people and the planet by having meat-free days. 
  • Olio for Schools – help schools pass surplus food to those in need; also teaching resources and activities
  • What is your schools milk solution? Still using individual cartons with plastic straws? Why not ask your milk provider to supply large cartons which you serve in cups? Read how one local school changed this.

Waste and Recycling

  • Consider hard to recycle items:
    • Recycle your crisp packets
    • Investigate TerraCycle’s hard to recycle solutions including crisp cans, makeup, stationery and more
    • Herts Sustainable Periods – free reusable period product demonstration kit and training for teachers (how to use and clean the products, health and environmental benefits). Please email

Greener Travel

  • Promote active and sustainable travel plans with Modeshift Stars.
  • Use the Clean Air Day (June) toolkit and resources for schools from St Albans District Council.
  • Read our blog about HomeRun, an app helping locals reduce their school run journeys