A WARGRAVE school has bolstered its commitment to the planet with its new Plastic- Free status.
Robert Piggott Junior School, on School Hill, received the eco-friendly award from Surfers Against Sewage earlier this month to commemorate its environmental action.
It is the first school in the Twyford and Wargrave area to receive the recognition.
Abigail Trayte, who led the eco-friendly project at the Junior School, said the award has been approximately two years in the making.
“We applied to the programme and had to complete a lot of steps before receiving it,” she explained. “It was inspired by a child and their parent who were keen to go plastic-free.
“We were already focused on cleaning up the environment around us by litter picking the playground, and it snowballed from there.”
Robert Piggott Junior School’s school council and eco team led the Plastic Free project which saw a series of changes, including: Removing plastic straws from lunches; getting rid of single-use plastic; closing down the school’s tuck shop; and asking manufacturers, including Mars, to stop using single-use plastic
“We first looked at how our school and local community could have an impact on the environment, and then took that to the wider community,” Ms Trayed explained.
“We even wrote to Theresa May to get her backing.”
She said the children loved getting involved with the project.
“It’s been great to see the children take part,” she added. “They are all really keen and it was such a sense of achievement to get the award after everything we’ve done.
“It’s been a difficult year and this gave us something to focus on and a reason to keep communication open during the pandemic.”
Ms Trayte hopes Robert Piggott Junior School can now act as a role model for other schools in the area.
She is also busy planning the team’s next eco-friendly move by implementing a terracycling system, to help pupils recycle items they struggle to bin at home.
“Though we’ve got plastic-free status, we’ve mainly got rid of single-use plastic,” the project mentor added. “We still recycle and reuse as much plastic as we can.
“It’s been child-led too. The pupils really are such advocates for the environment and want to make sure we live as best as we can.
“They want to do anything they can to protect the world.”
Surfers Against Sewage is an environmental movement focused on tackling plastic pollution.