Budding gardeners celebrate health and sustainability at Kilkenny School Project

Brian Keyes

Reporter:

Brian Keyes

Kilkenny School Project National School (KSP) has received its first Health Promoting Schools Flag, awarded by the HSE.
The achievement formed part of a double flag-raising celebration as KSP also marked the school’s ninth Green Flag, at a special flag-raising ceremony.
Guests of Honour, Meabh McGuinness of the HSE and Stephanie McDermott, former parent and human rights activist presented the two new flags. Addresses were made to an assembly of almost 250 students and staff on health promotion and Global Citizenship and Marine Environment, the theme of the ninth Green Flag.
The ‘Health Promoting Schools Programme’ awards schools that can demonstrate a focus on health and wellbeing. Benefits to schools who adopt a holistic approach to health and wellbeing include increased self-esteem for the students, safer and cleaner school environments, lowered incidences of bullying and a more positive approach to health issues.
Green Flags are part of an international environmental education programme. Run by An Taisce, in conjunction with the Local Authority, it is designed to raise students' awareness of environmental and sustainability issues through classroom study.
Thrilled
“The children and the entire school staff are thrilled to receive our first Health Promoting Schools Flag and our ninth Green Flag,” said school principal, Mary Nicholson, at the event.
“On behalf of the school I would like to extend our thanks to both the Green-Schools Committee and the HPS Committee for their tremendous effort and energy in successfully completing these achievements.”
As part of its ongoing commitment to sustainability and health promotion, with the support of Kilkenny County Council’s “Waste Prevention Programme”, the KSP pupils and Parent Teacher Association, headed up by Zsofia Szommer, developed an organic garden on the school grounds.
Each class has responsibility for tending to a section of the garden and they learn about growing vegetables, herbs and other plants.