Building a better world
For your generation, our generation and the next generation.
“If the bee disappeared off the face of the Earth, man would only have four years left to live” – Albert Einstein.
We are delighted to launch Jersey’s first student-led Social Impact Programme and Sustainability Strategy for St. Michael’s Preparatory School.
A first of its kind, this bespoke sustainability programme will see eleven students from our Shell Year (Year 9) take part in a unique learning experience, developing them academically, socially, and holistically to become Sustainability Ambassadors and in their role as Change Makers will lead their peers, staff members to sustainability success. Whilst our Shell students will be our young leaders, this is a whole school initiative. Every little helps for our planet and staff, parents, governors, partners and students will all have a part to play in making a difference.
Planned over an initial 18-month period, phase one of the programme will be delivered over three academic terms and will encourage continuous and dynamic self-assessment for the Shell students. It is purposely a hands-on programme which will see the students enjoy a newly added sustainability lesson to their curriculum. This will be balanced with a monthly workshop out of the classroom.
We hope this alternative approach will empower the students to take on their role as sustainability leaders with the knowledge, skills and confidence to play a major role in making a real change to both Jersey and overseas communities through social impact. St. Michael’s Preparatory School places a strong emphasis on encouraging students to achieve better than they first imagined – and with this programme our students in all year groups will certainly encourage them to go beyond, and for their community.
Sustainability is multi-disciplinary, and this programme’s content is to intentionally compliment academic life as well as extra-curricular and social life at St. Michael’s Preparatory School. A key part of the programme is to take the students on a journey through their own life cycle through workshop style lessons. This process will encourage them to look at things from a ‘systems-thinking approach’ and become more self-aware. The process will see students identify their personal objectives and ensure these align with St. Michael’s Preparatory School’s organisational objectives whilst meeting societies global objectives.
The strategy behind our programme is based on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. As we move into a post-pandemic, there is no better time to make a make a real change to our beautiful planet. The 17 Global Sustainable Development Goals are a collection of world recognised and shared global values to build a better world (set out by the United Nations). Their purpose – to help change the planet for the better. The goals can be and have been internationally adopted – from your favourite clothing brand to the way your energy is produced.
We are also delighted to announce that St. Michael’s is the first school in Jersey, and one of only five in the world to be working towards B Corp Certification. A globally adopted and recognised accreditation, Certified B Corporations are businesses that meet the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose. B Corps form a community of leaders and drive a global movement of people using business as a force for good and our school.
Over the next 18 months St. Michael’s will be working towards B Corp Certification. This is based on three essential pillars:
- • Social and environmental performance
- • Public transparency
- • Legal accountability
Alone, none of these pillars are succinct. It’s the combination of all three that makes the B Corp Certification unique, credible and significant. To meet the performance requirements, St. Michael’s Preparatory School must earn a minimum, verified score of 80 points on the B Impact Assessment (BIA), which examines a company’s overall impact on its teaching and non-teaching staff, school community, customers (parents), consumers (students) and environment.
Our BIA journey will begin in September 2021. Once complete, the data-driven results will provide a suite of recommendations which will drive decision-making and help the school prioritise targets. These targets will then be passed on to the students via workshops, where they will take the reins and become the ‘B Keepers’ – driving action September 2021
The Social Impact Programme is bespoke to St. Michael’s and as a result we have taken this opportunity to positively intertwine our values into its practice. Notably, because our values can also be applied beyond the school. Care: taking care of our planet – reducing our carbon footprint so our world has a long life. Consideration: to consider how we go about ourselves and decisions we make. Courtesy: be courteous in how we treat those in our communities from different backgrounds.
Sustainability might be a new talking point, but it is certainly here to stay. Our vision is for our students to be proud Global Citizens and Jersey’s young pioneers, championing sustainability in all they do. Their work across the next academic year will play a major part in the school’s journey to sustainability excellence.
Sustainability can even go beyond the school gates and should be adopted as a practice, not just a curriculum. In a Business Standard interview, passionate sustainability advocate and business leader Azim Premji, Chairman of the Indian information technology services company Wipro, shares some key insights into his company’s approach to sustainability education and empowering communities through education. When asked why children in rural villages, who do not have formal sustainability education opportunities, are much more aware of sustainability matters than their urban counterparts that read about it in textbooks, he said:
“Sustainability is a practice and not curriculum. I think…people who are within the environment and active are able to get to know the system; whereas students who only learn about theories in urban areas are disconnected from life. The best of schools are encouraging students to get involved in activities of saving energy, conserving water, power etc.” (Premji, 2017 quoted in Pramanik, 2017)
Help us make the change
For our generation, your generation and the next generation.