We are but travellers here
Environmental stewardship and mindfulness of the sacredness of our environment is encompassed by our mission statement, our educational principles and key strategies. MacKillop College seeks to instil in our students concepts of sustainable living and environmental stewardship through active citizenship projects, inclusion of sustainability issues in the curriculum and through community outreach projects.
Environmental stewardship and mindfulness of the sacredness of our environment is encompassed by our mission statement, our educational principles and key strategies.
MacKillop College seeks to instil in our students concepts of sustainable living and environmental stewardship through active citizenship projects, inclusion of sustainability issues in the curriculum and through community outreach projects.
To support the sustainability endeavours at MacKillop College, as of 2012 we formed a relationship with first the Centre for Education and Research in Environmental Strategies (CERES) and then the Victorian Association for Environmental Education (VAEE) to participate in the ResourceSmart Australian Sustainable Schools Initiative, Victoria (AuSSI Vic), receive accreditation and formalise our sustainability commitment.
Students and staff have identified areas where we can incorporate sustainability measures into our school activities and we are developing a Strategic Environmental Management Plan for the future. The Plan will set goals and targets for each of the four key modules; Biodiversity, Energy, Waste and Water and will be reviewed annually. An Environment and Sustainability Policy and Green Purchasing Guidelines has also been put in place.
Our sustainability initiatives include:
• Registered as a Resource Smart School and undertaking the Core Module
• Participation in the School Water Efficiency Program
• EcoMack – motivated, enthusiastic student-led environmental leadership group/sustainability team
• 1:1 laptop program reducing paper consumption
• Implementation of printing management defaults that automatically duplex printjobs
• Recycling of cans, paper, cardboard and printer cartridges
• Responsible recycling of obsolete computer and audio-visual equipment
• Installation of solar panels
• Use of recycled water for irrigating school grounds
• Worm farm program at main campus and SMC
• Landscaping with native plants
• School food garden establishment by VCAL and Year 9 SMC
• Celebration of MacKillop Sustainability Week annually
• Participation in Schools Trees Day (part of Planet Ark Plant a Tree Day)
• Participation in National Nude Food Day
• Participation in the They’re Calling on You mobile phone recycling initiative in conjunction with Zoos Victoria
• VCE Environmental Science is a subject that is offered
• Integrated Year 9 program at SMC that has a sustainability focus
• Sponsoring of a Werribee Zoo bandicoot by St Mary’s students
• Second-hand book sale and purchase through the online Sustainable School Shop
• Community service – for example litter collection from the Werribee South beach and education of primary school students at a Sustainable Schools Day run by the Wyndham City Council
Future goals include:
• Continue to incorporate measures to save water
• Continue to reduce energy consumption through retrofitting and awareness campaigns
• Increase amount of recycling and composting that takes place at the main campus
• Decrease waste production through education of students and staff
• Reduce resource cost to school by continuing to track use and expenditure data
• Maintain student-led sustainability group, EcoMack
• Build further sustainability partnerships within the local community
In 2012, the student led environmental club EcoMack was successfully restarted, under the leadership of the two Environment and Sustainability captains, and has continued to grow since then.
EcoMack is for those students and staff interested in learning about, and taking action on, issues concerning the Environment and Sustainability, both on the local and larger scale levels.
During the course of the school year, EcoMack holds numerous school events to encourage environmental awareness and responsibility. EcoMack events and programs held in the past include but are not limited to:
• Sustainability Week
• Tree Planting Day in support of National School Tree Day
• Mobile phone recycling drives to support Zoos Victoria’s They’re Calling On You program
• Nude Food days
• Worm farm workshops
• Community gardening