Melbourne Girls Grammar School has two main campuses. The Senior and Middle School, and the ELC campuses are located on Anderson Street South Yarra, and the P-4 campus is in nearby Caroline Street in South Yarra. Both campuses have undergone major building works.
We have undertaken to complete and continue to improve in core and energy modules and are reviewing water, waste and biodiversity especially within the framework of new building works being undertaken in 2011.
The new building (Opening in 2011) is the Year 5/6 centre on the Anderson Street site. In the planning of these major works, the school gave consideration to and undertook to make the building as sustainable as possible within the constraints of the building design and size. As part of the building works, MGGS incorporated:
- In addition to an already existing 100,000 litre water tank currently used by the school for watering of gardens, there has been an installation of a further 100,000litre water tank which collects recycled water which is used for our gardens and in the sewage/toilets within the new system.
- Monitoring devices have also been placed on the new water tank to provide indication of any leakage.
- All lighting and air conditioning are on timers and sensors are used to reduce unnecessary use of lights and an auto switch-off system is in place after 5pm on all weekdays.
- A vegetable and herb garden have been established in the Year 5/6 Centre which is managed by the students and overseen by staff. The vegetables and herbs grown in these gardens are hoped to be used in the new kitchen allowing the students to understand the use of local produce in the preparation of meals. In addition to the vegetable garden, students also aim to grow other produce such as olives. The Olives and herbs grown in the garden will also be used to generate income to support the sustainability initiatives within the school.
- In consideration of biodiversity within the school, our school arborist advises on appropriate planting in the new gardens giving appropriate emphasis on biodiversity, native species, and watering requirements. All plants in the new centre, and throughout the whole school are tagged and audited on a regular basis for condition, disease and life span.
- The 5/6 Centre roof is also desiged for water collection which has been combined into a beautifully designed centre piece which acts as a water collection point and also a water feature in the garden.
Other sustainability measures in Energy undertaken by MGGS include:
- Applying for and receiving a grant from the Federal Government within the NSSP grants to install a new 2 Kw solar panel system. This is in addition to the solar panels already used in the Merton Wing of the Senior School.
- As part of the grant, we also hope to receive funding to replace some current lighting with T5 energy efficient globes and install T5s with reflectors.
- The school student diaries are now produced in an environmentally friendly way. MGGS uses Greenhouse Friendly ENVI Carbon Neutral Paper. ENVI operates in conjunction with the Department of Climate Change under its Greenhouse Friendly (GHF) program and through lifecycles analysis, has reduced and offset all greenhouse gas emissions associated with production of their goods, thus making them 100% Carbon Neutral and our diaries well on the way to making the same claim.
- Both the ELC and Junior School have vegetable and/or herb gardens which are fertilised from the waste composted through worm farms.
- As part of annual refurbishment, as much recycled timber from older building is used.
- We have established a sustainability page on our Learning Management System (eVI) which connects not just with all staff and students, but all the wider parent community.
- As part of eVI, students can now submit, have work corrected on laptop tablets and returned via our Learning management System reducing our use of paper.
Objectives and Goals:
- Educate and remind staff and students of their electricity and power usage. Incorporate a weekend shut down in addition to holiday shut downs to reduce electricity consumption.
- Improve awareness of energy use in Boarding House.
- Reduce and conserve energy through student led initiatives.
- Discuss with cleaning contractors regimes in place for cleaning – product type, water usage etc
- Review, improve (where necessary) and implement cleaning and rinse/wash strategies in Art and Science Faculties.
- Set and achieve some water based policies to improve efficiency in water used and amount of water used – including in Boarding Facilities
- Review and implement waste reduction policies through Environment Club and raise student awareness of waste and recycling.
- Target waste electronic and electrical products in IT Department and with students and staff.
- Improve signage throughout the school, especially in water use and waste.
- Student body to educate and inform students, staff and wider community on the use of drink bottles and lunch boxes to reduce the consumption of bottled water.
- Improve carry in/carry out policies for packaging waste
- Continue to review and implement more green procurement in all areas of the school, particularly
- Update and maintain SETs data input processes and carry out more regular reflections on energy and water use and reduce overall land fill waste and increase recycling in 2011.