Ballina N.S. is a 15 teacher school located in Ballina-Killaloe in North Tipperary. The school received their first Green-Flag in 2004 for their work on litter & waste and renewed their flag in 2006 for their work on energy.
The committee is made up of twelve students from third to sixth class. All 127 students from 3rd to 6th class were asked to list three things they would do if they were on the committee. The students wrote down their answers and submitted to teachers, who picked out the good applications. The successful applicants were then approached and asked if they wished to be on the committee. The committee meets once a month from 2.45 to 3.15.
The school organised an Energy Awareness Day, when all the power was turned off. The lack of light was seen as the biggest inconvenience!
Ballina reduced their oil consumption in the school year 2004/05 by 10% compared to the previous year. The school achieved an even bigger decrease in 2005/06, reducing consumption by 20% compared with 2004/05. This reduction was achieved by good housekeeping measures and by the reduction of the thermostatic setting by 1ºC. All of this reduction took place while the size of the school and student number were increasing!
The school has changed to Green Electricity (supplied by ENERGIA). In each class, the teacher and committee members keep an energy awareness chart, which is a checklist that the class checks before they go home. The chart contains the following categories:
Lights off when class is out.
Computers turned off at 3pm.
All sockets turned off when classroom is empty.
Windows and doors closed to keep heat in.
Recycling boxes in order.
Taps turned off, no drips.
Ballina N.S. received funding from North Tipperary County Council for ‘Ecological Footprint’ expenses. The committee with help of parents distributed questionnaires to 1000 households in the parish. Once the questionnaires were completed and returned to the school, committee members (past and present) performed the necessary calculations and the results were printed on leaflets and distributed to all businesses, public places and schools in the area, as well as being included in local newspapers and parish newsletter.