News

SNCAE

Craighouse School has been certified by the Sistema Nacional de Certificación Ambiental de Establecimientos Educacionales (National Environmental Certification System for Educational Institutions) with the “excellence” level, for promoting environmental education in our teaching and curriculum, management areas and our relationship with the local environment. The Ministry of the Environment coordinates the SNCAE programme, Ministry of Education, National Forest Corporation (CONAF), Chilean Association of Municipalities, United Nations, UNESCO and the General Water Directorate.

Environmental Committee

In 2009 EcoCommunity was formed, a new community of environmental leaders motivated by their passion and activism in the protection of the environment.

In 2019, Senior pupils created an Environmental Committee divided into different commissions, each with a specific objective in the design of projects for our community. The Middle and Senior Sections have an eco-leader in each class.

Local biodiversity

By María Ignacia Convalía, Director of Arts

In 2019 an activity was held to provide nesting houses which native bird species can use during their reproduction periods. During 2019, each class built and painted a house, and then placed them in locations near the school. The birdcages are monitored to check if birds are using them.

“Reducing and reusing” – REP law

In 2018 a new law was passed, Responsabilidad Extendida al Productor, which dictates that companies must take responsibility for the manufacturing of environmentally harmful products. During 2019, Craighouse School created a project that involves collecting, designing and implementing ideas for reusing tyres, which are highly polluting and many of which end up in the oceans, harming the marine biodiversity.

Recycling electronic devices, batteries, CDs, etc...

In 2018, in an alliance with Recycla Chile, we organised a campaign that involved all our educational community. The idea was that all families could bring their electronic waste, which would later be dismantled and recycled appropriately. More than 1,900 families contributed to this campaign, and we managed to collect 353 kg of electronic waste.

In 2019, the campaign was organised together with RECYTECH.

Recycling tetrapack, cans and plastic

During 2019, all school pupils took part in an art competition whose objective was to promote a new way to recycle. The children themselves were able to design the logos for the classification of waste, which would later be recycled appropriately.

Raising awareness

By María Ignacia Convalía, Director of Arts

In 2019, our pupils decided to launch a campaign that would impact the whole educational community with giant posters which were hung outside the school, showing marine animals affected by plastic. The pictures invited parents to reflect on the subject with their children when they drove them to school, and the discussions continued among pupils and teachers in the classroom.

Reforestation

During 2019, together with Fundación Reforestemos, the school was part of a reforestation campaign in Chile. For this purpose, we invited parents and pupils to form green committees in each class. The idea was that every year pupils could leave a legacy in the form of a tree representing each year level so that at the end of their school life each student will have planted at least twelve trees during their stay at Craighouse School.

Book campaign

Every book that is not used at school or is in bad shape will be collected in special boxes provided by Fundación Green Libros, who will later give them a new life.

Environmental Education tab

The school website has a page specially designed for all Environmental Education projects. This page is a new space for pupils, teachers and parents to suggest sections that contribute to reflection and action on this issue.

Recycling

Craighouse School has implemented a recycling system that consists of collecting all waste in three puntos limpios, one in each section. This project involves an alliance with Bendito Residuo, a company that will add value to the waste produced in our school every week by taking it to different recycling plants.

Solar panels

In 2019, we installed solar panels to increase our energy efficiency. The photovoltaic panels are transforming energy from the sun into electrical energy, contributing to the power consumption of our school. These panels provide us with 80 kW of solar energy and help us reduce our institutional carbon footprint.

Renewable energies – ENEL certificate

Reforestation using native species

By María Ignacia Convalía, Director of Arts

In 2019 the school launched a reforestation campaign with native species (peumo, quillay, and boldo). This project encouraged our community members to take part by integrating academic and formative contents.

One hundred trees were planted, thanks to a donation from NGO Ecoviveros Carbono Cero.

Bees in the garden

by Sergio Lopez, Sport Fields and Landscaping Coordinator

Our gardens serve an essential function: they are green corridors that expand the biodiversity of our surrounding areas, providing refuge and food to insects that live there and which have been forced to migrate to new territories. Abejas de Chile, a foundation dedicated to studying native bees and recording their presence throughout the country, visited our school in February 2020 in order to study the bees found in our school. After going around our open areas, they found three species of native bees and a large number of species that are yet to be analysed.

Water efficiency and landscaping

by Sergio Lopez, Sport Fields and Landscaping Coordinator

In terms of water, the vegetable species found in our gardens are of Mediterranean origin, and their water requirements are very low. This is a very important factor since selecting species based on their water requirements is key when planning a garden that is sustainable over time.

We have also installed pressurised watering systems that can reach an efficiency of around 84%. This enables us to increase our efficiency in the superficial use of water in the school gardens and sports fields. We now have 1.49 hectares of planted surface in gardens, and 2.78 hectares of grass. Specialists monitor these areas in order to establish sustainable, environmentally-friendly watering frequencies and durations.

In terms of landscaping, the species planted have been chosen based on their flowering dates, which extend throughout the year. They thus become green corridors that keep pollen and nectar available year-round for beneficial insects, which contributes to the bio-dynamic development of the area.

Climate Action Project

Pupils and teachers from Craighouse School will participate in this project which aims to change students' behaviour and societies' mindset concerning climate change and environmental threats through education. The Climate Action project will be launched in October 2020 and will involve between 1 to 10 million pupils across 107 countries and is supported by governments of15 countries.

The project is free and it is in collaboration with WWF and NASA, and endorsed by Jane Goodall, President Higgins, Kumi Naidoo, scientists and public figures.

To know more about this project please visit:

https://www.climate-action.info/about/

Educational events

By María Ignacia Convalía, Director of Arts

In 2019, we designed spaces where we met and talked with different organisations in our region.

In July 2019, environmental leaders and CARE monitors of the three sections visited Hospital Calvo Mackenna to deliver the plastic caps collected during “Junta tus tapitas” campaign.

IIn August 2019, the Senior Environmental Committee took part in the first student meeting “Sé protagonista de cambio” (Be a protagonist of change) organised by the Lo Barnechea Municipality. During this event, important authorities shared their views of climate change and sustainable development. Some of the guests were Diego Riveaux (Regional Environmental Secretary of RM), Gustavo Guerra of País Circular, Victoria Álamos, Director of Environment, Cleaning and Embellishment of the Lo Barnechea Municipality, among others.

ISome of our environmental leaders of the Middle and Senior Sections took part in a conference called “Climate is changing: why aren’t we?” organised by the Environmental Committee of the ABSCH.

IFinally, on Saturday 7th August we organised a beach cleaning activity together with other British schools of the Metropolitan Region.