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Horris Hill owner continues push for carbon neutrality across schools

The owner of Horris Hill school in Newtown has kicked off plans to realise its commitment to become the first fully carbon neutral schools group in the UK.

Over the past two years, Forfar Education said it has invested almost £500,000 in sourcing and providing greener solutions to reduce the carbon footprint of its group of nine schools and nurseries.

It hopes to ensure each school will be carbon neutral within five years of joining the Forfar family.

More than £75,000 is being invested in low carbon LED lighting at Horris Hill this summer
More than £75,000 is being invested in low carbon LED lighting at Horris Hill this summer

At Horris Hill this summer, more than £75,000 is being invested in low carbon LED lighting to continue to reduce the carbon footprint of the school – and this initiative is then going to be rolled out across all Forfar schools.

John Forsyth, chief executive and founder of Forfar, said: “Our role is to nurture and instil confidence in the next generation, and, just as importantly, we need to ensure that there is a world for that generation to enter into.

“This is about doing the right thing at the right time.

The Horris Hill garden for its kitchen
The Horris Hill garden for its kitchen

“We need to help the next generation to live in an environmentally responsible way, which develops a sustainable mindset enabling the power and beauty of nature to be admired and understood for generations to come.

“The Forfar ethos is one of family and community and for these to endure, we must also now weave environmental responsibility and ecological sustainability into all we do, so that our children are inspired to play their part.”

Over the next few years, Mr Forsyth said schools across the group will work together to share resources, plan ‘green projects’ and build cross-school ‘green teams’, with Forfar Education providing support to engage them in eco-friendly projects, building their skills and ambitions, while encouraging them, their community and wider society to live in a more sustainable way.

Initiatives will be embedded into the curriculum, involving not just the pupils, but their families, staff members and importantly, the local community.

The group also envisages a series of international projects, providing the opportunity for schools and communities across the world to share environmental information while affecting cultural changes.

Mr Forsyth added: “As educators, we need to teach our pupils that living sustainably is a responsibility carried by us all – it is not just the concern of policy makers and big business leaders.

“Learning to be less wasteful and more efficient should be a part of our everyday lives and by teaching positive habits from day one, we aim to nurture a mindset in our children that helps them to grow up to be environmentally responsible adults.

“Our main goal from this initiative is to set a shining example for our pupils about living sustainability and to make the caretaking of our environment a top priority for them as they develop their social attitudes, beliefs and passions.”

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