EDUCATION AWARDS 2019: Environmental Awards, sponsored by South Holland District Council
Energy-saving Eco Warriors in Cowbit, rain harvesting at a Spalding special school, Carbon Ambassadors in Pinchbeck and water wardens in Deeping St James.
These are the four ideas that brought Cowbit St Mary's Primary School, The Priory School, Pinchbeck East Primary School and The Deepings School, respectively, the Environmental Award.
This year, the Lincolnshire Free Press and Spalding Guardian Education Awards will once again celebrate the nurseries, pre-schools, primary and secondary schools that have done the most to reduce pollution, preserve energy and show awareness of the natural world around them.
Sometimes, success at the Education Awards can set off a chain reaction of recognition, as was the case for The Deepings School's Butt Masters STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) team in 2018.
What started off as a challenge to build robots out of Lego bricks transformed into a project to create butt sticks to indicate when water butts, large barrels used for catching and storing rainwater, reach their capacity.
Years 7 and 8 students at The Deepings School, Amber Goodall, Hannah Tilley, Callum Hoyles, Gabriel Kerr, Patrick Wadsworth and Rhys Gage, were praised by judges for the "innovation and uniqueness" of their design, skills that "they will carry with them throughout their lives".
Assistant head teacher Richard Corner said: "Our STEM team, The Butt Masters, won the Environmental award for creating an accessory for a water butt which ensured that the amount of water wasted was kept to a minimum.
"The team had already won the regional round of the ‘First Lego League’ competition and so represented the south-east Lincolnshire region at the national finals.
"Within school, the success of the team and the award they won had a really positive impact on the number of students that want to take part in STEM activities.
"This year, we were able to enter two teams at the regional competition and next year, we hope to add a third team solely made up of girls.
"Such an entry would be a huge achievement as the number of girls engaging in STEM activities nationally is very low and a priority for the country.
"As well as the impact on the student uptake, we have seen increased interest from parents and the chief executive officer of our multi-academy trust, Andy Yarrow, who met with our winning team recently to discuss this year’s project and their future plans.
"Overall, winning the Environmental award had an immensely positive effect on our school and we hope it will do the same for the future winners."
The Environmental award is sponsored for the fourth time by South Holland District Council which carries out services, including rubbish and council tax collections, housing and planning, alcohol and taxi licensing, leisure and tourism.
A South Holland District Council spokesman said: "This is an especially important category because effective management of our natural resources and the renewable energy sources that will replace them, as well as understanding and tackling climate change and emerging environmental challenges, are the key issues that will face our children in the future.
"We are very proud to support these awards as South Holland District Council views education as not only being vital to young people accessing further education and improving their career opportunities, but also a driver for the region's economic development.
"These Education Awards recognise students and teachers who have achieved excellence, but they also serve as an encouragement and inspiration for others."
. You can nominate a pupil/student, teacher/staff member, class and/or school in one or more of the awards’ 11 categories.
Nomination forms are available by emailing Denise Vickers at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01775 765400.
Completed forms should be returned by May 22 ahead of judging later the same month.
Coun Patricia Bradwell, executive member for children’s services at Lincolnshire County Council, said: “It is important that pre-schools, primary and secondary schools do not miss out so please send your nominations in.”
The categories are Contribution to the Community, sponsored by Bakkavor Group; Environmental Award, sponsored by South Holland District Council; Pre-School of the Year, sponsored by Riverside Training; Inspirational Teacher of the Year (Primary), sponsored by Springfields Outlet Shopping and Leisure; Inspirational Teacher of the Year (Secondary), sponsored by Produce Industry Expo 2019; Most Improved Student, sponsored by Worldwide Fruit; Student of the Year, sponsored by Duncan and Toplis Chartered Accountants and Business Advisers; Outstanding Sporting Achievement, sponsored by Double G Clothing; Primary School of the Year, sponsored by Moore Thompson Chartered Accountants; Secondary School of the Year, sponsored by Freshtime UK; Support Staff Award, sponsored by Calthrops Solicitors.