Sustainable Schools Framework

Purchasing & Waste

The Government wants all schools to
become 'sustainable schools' by 2020.

When visiting a selection of schools to assess teaching about sustainability and progress towards meeting the expectations of the National Framework for Sustainable Schools last year, inspectors discovered that most of the schools had limited knowledge of sustainability and it was not seen to be an integral part of the curriculum.

Sustainability and climate change are gaining a higher public and political profile. According to Alan Johnson, the former Secretary of State for Education and Skills...

'Schools are there to give children the knowledge and skills they need to become active members of society. Many children are rightly worried about climate change, global poverty and the impact of our lifestyles on our environment. Schools can demonstrate ways of living that are models of good practice for children and their communities. They can build sustainable development into the learning experience of every child to encourage innovation and improvement'. (1)

The National framework for Sustainable Schools has close links to 'Every Child Matters' outcomes. (2)

As well as identifying the principles of caring for oneself, each other and the environment, it also introduces 8 'doorways' through which schools may wish to initiate their activity about sustainable schools.

'Purchasing and waste - reusing and recycling as many goods as possible' is one of these 'doors'.

'Phil' the Bag fits nicely into one of the 'doors' of the Sustainable Schools' Framework - Purchasing & Waste. When judging the quality of learning outcomes for education for sustainable development, Ofsted inspectors believe that pupils should know about the benefits of reducing, re-using and recycling and that they should have an awareness of relevant topical issues such as global warming and measures to reduce the carbon 'footprint'.

OFSTED likes to see schools where recycling is part of a well established and comprehensive programme. 'Phil' the Bag can help schools get top marks as you can involve not only the whole school but also the wider community!



1. Sustainable schools for pupils, communities and the environment: government response to the consultation, DFES, 2006.
Available from

2. Information, publications and other resources about the 'Every Child Matters' initiative are available from

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