School Plan Leads to Biodiversity Module Accreditation

In 2004 our school planted several hundred native trees donated by Faggs Mitre 10 and the WREC.  We also planted some Robina trees in front of the school with assistance from Geelong Botanic Gardens staff..

On 9th May 2005 GEPS also received accreditation for the Biodiversity module of the Australian Sustainable Schools Initiative Project due to the detailed Master Grounds Plan we had developed. The school principal also successfully applied for a $1000 grant from the Victorian Primary Principals’ Association to use as part of our sustainability program.

 

In 2006 we received a $150,000 grant as part of the Investing in Our Schools Project for our Master Grounds Plan which included an oval upgrade with an automated watering system, indigenous gardens and a fruit and vegetable garden. Students had input in the initial planning process. Gordon Institute of TAFE horticultural student groups are working on a regular basis to assist our school in planning, maintaining and planting plants in various garden beds around the school grounds. A year 6 class recently worked closely with Gordon students to plant out indigenous garden beds on sculptured mounds adjacent to the school oval.  This garden will form an outdoor learnscape area for students to learn about biodiversity.
Our Kitchen/Garden project will be based on the Stephanie Alexander philosophy.  Students will plant, maintain and harvest food grown in the vegetable beds. They will then use the harvested produce to cook recipes in the kitchen.  The students will then eat their cooked meals in a “restaurant” type setting. Our school has applied for the “Go for Your Life” grant to help subsidise the project. We anticipate forming an on-going partnership with the Gordon Horticultural faculty to work closely with GEPS students and staff in propagating seeds and growing fruit, vegetables and herbs for use in our kitchen.
Our school is currently negotiating with the East Geelong Rotary Club to provide labour and resources to build our hot house in the vegetable garden area.  This will allow students to propagate seedlings and make paper bricks all year round.
Geelong East Primary School has also established a “Pets In Classrooms” project with pets as diverse as cockatiels, rabbits, bearded dragon lizards and spiny leaf insects being nurtured in classrooms.  We are currently negotiating with a vet to teach care management practices to students throughout the school as part of this project.
Information about our biodiversity program and sustainability progress is reported on a regular basis in our school newsletter under the banner of “ECOCORNER”.
Our Sustainability Team has developed a VELS linked curriculum CD on Biodiversity for levels one to four called the WWEB of Life.    This CD will soon be available online with the Department of Education’s Knowledge Bank website. The team has been nominated for a Teaching & Learning award for the Researcher of the Year Awards 2007 in the Geelong region.
By Geelong East Primary School|2017-11-06T17:16:53+10:00April 25th, 2013|0 Comments
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