Students at St. Patrick School in Taber will be getting their hands on some new technology after winning a $20,000 grant from Staples Canada for their efforts to limit their carbon footprint and learn more about their environmental impact.
The school is one of 10 across the country to win the company’s 2019 Superpower Your School Contest.
St. Patrick was named a winner after installing solar panels on its roof and giving student the chance to track how much energy is being collected.
“[It’s] so important now more than ever to talk to these kids about climate change and how we can solve these problems in the future because you can’t ignore it anymore. These kids need to know the facts,” said Grade 2/3 teacher Nicole Caputo.
She’s the teacher who championed the grant application and added the entire community has been fully on board with the school’s program.
St. Patrick’s principal also noticed students becoming really involved in learning more about being eco-friendly.
“I can see it becoming a passion and the enthusiasm around this. Now this grant will fuel that passion and hopefully fuel a better future for these kids in terms of how they treat their environment,” said Michelle Nevil.
The school also created a team of students responsible for the school’s recycling and organic collection program.
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The award was granted just before Earth Day, which falls on April 22.
“The winning schools are emerging leaders in green living,” said Deb Doncaster, President of Earth Day Canada in a media release.
“From school-wide commitments to compost and recycling to student-run greenhouses and gardens, these student-led initiatives are inspiring and motivating.”
Staples has held the competition every year since 2011 and has awarded more than $2 million in products to 90 schools across Canada.
“We hope the new technology allows these schools to amplify their efforts as environmental leaders within their communities,” said Staples Canada CEO David Boone. “The technology will allow these schools to communicate their environmental initiatives to their communities and beyond.”
St. Patrick School was the only school in Alberta to win the grant this year.
Caputo said the grant will go towards upgrading the school’s iPads and getting some robotics to help the school’s STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) program.
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