The Sussex Schools Sustainability Summit at Cottesmore Prep School
As world leaders gather to discuss global sustainability this week, 60 children from schools in Sussex congregated at Cottesmore School for the ‘Sussex Schools Sustainability Summit’, named COTT27.
Pupils from local primary schools arrived at Cottesmore at 9 o’clock on Friday for a briefing on the day’s activities. Helen Sundaram, a sustainability expert from The Kindness Bank, was the lead host, organising the various sustainability sessions. She coined the motto for the summit which is ‘Switch Off Climate Change’ and said of the day that, “it was such fun”.
Two Cottesmore pupils, who had previously attended the ecologically-minded Green School in Bali, gave a lecture about their time there and the sustainability work that they carried out as pupils.
Tom Rogerson the Cottesmore Headteacher said, “The purpose of the summit today was to pool our resources and to come up with some local initiatives to help tackle global climate change. We were hugely excited that so many children could come to Cottesmore’s event today. One of the best things about the day was that the individual teams consisted of a mix of Cottesmore children and the guests from Sussex primary schools. It was a huge pleasure to witness such energetic and raw creativity and natural collaborative talent.”
The full delegation was split into teams which consisted of a mix of girls and boys from each school and each team created and presented a social media-style post about sustainability.
The event seemed to be well-received by the attending schools. “Feedback from staff and children was very positive,” said Jo Newton Executive Headteacher of Kilnwood Vale Primary School.
Miss Hunt from Forge Wood Primary said that, ‘Our children had a brilliant time and it was such a pleasure to attend.’
Sharon Bondonno, Headteacher of Handcross Primary said, “This event was an important opportunity for the children to come together to discuss the 17 Sustainable Development Goals.” They discussed ways to apply these goals in practical ways to make a difference within their own lives and communities. The children came away determined to put these into action to ensure we are all ‘kinder to our planet’. It was a wonderful day with a sustainable legacy.”
At the end of the day each ‘delegate’ made a personal sustainability pledge ‘to camera’.
The schools hopes to hold similar events in the future.