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Our sustainability strategy has been informed by Pope Francis’ Laudato Si encyclical and the school’s Student Eco Council and Governing Board. We wish to play an active role in raising awareness, taking action to make positive changes for all of our global futures.

We will actively support change in our community by making the care of creation part of our daily actions as we strive to make our school carbon neutral by 2035.

“The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.”

Genesis 2:15

The aim of our Sustainability Strategy is:

  1. To educate all members of our school community about the need for environmental and sustainability practices, ensuring that all can make a positive impact on environmental sustainability within the local and global community as guardians of God’s creation.
  2. To define and measure the environmental impact of our schools’ actions and activities and to subsequently develop a set of targets to reduce any negative impact and costs.
  3. To ensure that both staff and students are encouraged to play an active role, as responsible stewards of our school environmental and sustainability agenda.
  4. To encourage behavioural changes and increase participation in environmental and sustainability issues. As Pope Francis prays in Laudato Si, “that we may sow beauty, not pollution and destruction.

According to the ‘Governors’ Guide to Sustainable Schools’ (DfES, 2007b), a sustainable school is one that has care as its central value: “care for oneself, care for each other (distant and near, as well as for future generations), care for the environment (from the school grounds to the planet)”.

We will follow a whole-school approach and focus on culture, campus, community and curriculum.

St James’ Catholic High School’s Sustainability Strategy is the responsibility of all of our school community – as we aim to protect and strengthen our environment and planet for the future of all.


  • To increase our understanding of carbon literacy for staff and students
  • To develop the capacities of all staff to promote the understanding of the principles of sustainability
  • To increase the understanding about reducing carbon usage for students and staff
  • To share and encourage the principles of sustainability with the wider community
  • Develop an ethos of promoting sustainability across the school
  • Achieve the Eco Schools Green Flag Award


  • To explore renewable energy generation
  • To plan for replacement heating system
  • To explore, and regularly revisit, options to purchase green or ultra-low carbon energy
  • To measure, report on and improve the operational energy efficiency of premises – gas, water and electricity to reduce our energy usage
  • Reduce single-use plastics in the kitchen.
  • Reduce litter


  • To reduce the amount of waste we produce
  • To maximize recycling
  • To encourage staff, students and parents to recycle as much waste as possible, in school and at home
  • To maintain respect for natural resources by teaching, promoting
  • and modelling the most efficient use of materials and by using renewable, recycled and recyclable products wherever possible
  • Improve recycling and decrease waste


  • Pre-loved uniform scheme
  • Encourage re-fillable water bottles and coffee travel mugs.


  • To enhance the natural environment and increase biodiversity across our school grounds
  • To promote environmental volunteering amongst students and staff
  • To ensure that school grounds are maintained to a high standard and are as litter free as possible
  • Improve our school grounds by creating areas for nature


  • To promote and review the School Travel Plan on a regular basis
  • To consider adopting carbon offsetting for medium and long-haul school travel wherever possible
  • To encourage the use of bikes by promoting safe cycling and secure cycle storage and safe crossing points
  • To promote and support car-sharing, public transport, walking and cycling to and from school to students, parents and staff
  • Monitor the air quality of the school grounds and promote anti-idling by vehicles in and around the school grounds


  • Develop our Climate Action Plan
  • To make sure sustainability is an active part of our procurement policy
  • To ensure that we pursue a policy of best practice, local purchasing and the use of environmentally friendly products, where possible
  • To sign up to the Net Zero Carbon Buildings commitment
  • To consider sustainability issues throughout the planning, design and construction of all capital and other projects

Our Yearly carbon footprint is…

We are one of the first schools in the country to calculate our annual carbon footprint!
Knowing your carbon footprint is an important first step. What could you do to help reduce it?

Download the Carbon Footprint Poster

Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

Genesis 1:26

Jesus looked at them and said,
“With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible”

Matthew 19:26