Our Future's People is a sustainable energy programme for secondary schools. It brings together two or our most successful projects; 'Young Energy People' and 'Your Green Future' both of which have won prestigious awards for their contribution to sustainability education.
The programme aims to reduce school’s energy use and improve the sustainability of their operations whilst providing students with a valuable educational opportunity. Through the programme they will develop a range of transferrable skills, increase their self-confidence and develop an awareness of environmental issues and the wide range of employment opportunities available within the ever expanding ‘green economy’.
The chart below summarises the main project activities:
A School Energy Management Team comprising of 10 -20 students is recruited through an application and interview process. Successful applicants are allocated specific job roles on the team that will lead the project forward in the school. Through this application process, students develop key employability skills.
Students on the School Energy Management Team receive introductory training focussing on environmental issues related to energy production, energy management and renewable energy technologies. This provides the context for the work to follow, whilst supporting curriculum work in geography, science, PSE, ICT, English and mathematics.
Following this training, students go on to carry out a survey of their school premises investigating the school buildings, the technology used and the way in which building users interact with these.
Students write up a report detailing their findings along with an action plan showing their recommendations for improving the sustainability of their school's energy use. They present this to governors and senior management with their key recommendations being incorporated into the school's improvement plans.
Students plan and run an energy awareness campaign to promote positive behaviour change among staff, students and the wider community.
Students are offered work placements with local organisations during which they carry out an energy survey of the premises, reporting their findings and recommendations back to their hosts. This provides them with a valuable opportunity to apply their newly developed knowledge and skills to a workplace context whilst also increasing their awareness of the employment opportunities available locally within the 'green economy.'
Students and teachers are provided with an opportunity to meet with the other schools working on the project to share ideas and experiences. As part of this event, students will have the opportunity to present their business energy plans.
Students are invited to an interactive event which engages them with a low carbon economy and their potential role in creating this through their career choices. They attend a series of interactive workshops looking at various sustainability issues as well as interacting with a range of businesses and education providers in our exhibition hall. See www.yourgreenfuture.org.uk