The Greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it – Robert Swan
Our Sustainability Committee values our pivotal position as educators in encouraging our students to connect with the natural world around them. Connections foster a sense of care and responsibility and ultimately a drive to protect.
Ensuring a community that is conscious about their actions underpins our agendas and actions. Small changes in our everyday lives can have a significant impact as a collective. What small change will you make today?
The United Nations defines sustainable development as “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” (World Commission on Environment and Development, 1987). We support the teaching of the United Nations Sustainable development goals.
At SISD we understand that Educating for Sustainability (EfS) involves a deep understanding and awareness of the interconnectedness and dependency of our social, economic and environmental systems. SISD, therefore, employs a whole school approach to Educating for Sustainability. Sustainability concepts and key understandings are woven throughout the curriculum and reflected in our school’s day-to-day practices. We are members of the Eco-Schools Programme.
Our main objectives of a Whole School Approach to Educating for Sustainability:
- Instill the knowledge, skills, attitudes, attributes, actions and enduring understandings of sustainability practices within the entire school community
- Fully integrate the campus design, daily operations and local community into the curriculum and teaching and learning
- Move SISD towards a Circular Economy model
The Ellen McArthur Foundation Circular Economy is used in the IB Curriculum.
We believe that social, cultural, economic and environmental awareness prepare us to play our part in shaping a better future for ourselves and those around us. SISD’s whole-school approach to sustainability can be seen in all facets of school life.
Learn about our 4 tips for sustainable living.
At SISD we foster a deep love and connection with nature and strive to restore the health of the living systems which we all depend on.
- Water Use & Management – SISD prioritizes water conservation throughout the school through water conservation technologies such as our Smixin taps and promoting conservation practices.
- Land Use & Ecosystems – Working to increase natural green spaces and maintain healthy ecosystems around campus
- Waste & Recycling – All stakeholders work together to reduce waste throughout the school, reduce resource consumption and increase resource recovery rates. Our overall long-term goal is to reduce our waste to landfill by 75%. We reduce waste by using reusable dishes and cutlery during whole school events and classroom parties. We have filtered-water dispensers and we encourage our community members to bring their own bottles/cups. We collect compost and use it in our school garden.
- Connection with Nature – We foster an experiential hands-on based learning process that ensures students engage with nature. We do this through planting and growing flowers and vegetables in our 30 raised garden beds in our Learning Gardens, our outdoor play spaces and by bringing plants and natural materials into the classrooms.
We prioritize design thinking, systems thinking, product life extension, reducing and recycling.
- Resource Use – SISD’s purchasing and procurement policy strives to outline standards and procedures for selecting sustainable and locally sourced products. Our Zero Waste Vendor Policy has been put into place to reduce items to landfill and increase reusability, recycling and compost.
- Energy Use –SISD has installed various energy efficiency technologies and conserves energy through daily behavioral habits
- Ethical Business Practices – SISD fosters the value of ethical business practice in all school endeavors.
- Investment in Green Technologies – SISD is committed to investing in materials with minimal environmental impact and that increase social well-being.
- Community Contributions – SISD supports the outside community for social and environmental projects
At SISD we are inclusive and strive to create a strong social cohesion among our students, staff, teachers, parents and the wider community.
- Social Cohesion – We aim to build positive relationships within our diverse community.
- Sense of Place & Belonging – SISD ensures all students are engaged in the local environment, community, and school in a variety of ways that build a sense of place and belonging. SISD also strives to build understanding and empathy among teaching staff and students with the UAE.
- Community Engagement & Partnerships – SISD develops relationships and partnerships with outside community stakeholders. We partnered with Give a Ghaf to plant 400 seeds trees, Surge for water to learn about water conservation, and AzraqMe for ocean conservation.
- Service & Sustainability Action – SISD supports community projects at all levels and encourages the school community to act through service to others through a genuine sense of empathy and giving.
- Cultural Preservation– SISD works to preserve individual and host country cultural identities, languages, and heritage through various celebrations and events.
Our latest Sustainability initiatives
Thumbs Up! Our Early Years student leaders visited the Early Years classes to raise awareness about sustainability at school. The leaders asked each class if they had recyclable boxes and bottles; teachers and students received a big thumbs up if they showed that they were using reusable bottles.
Eco-Schools Green Flag award
We are delighted to announce that the school has recently been awarded the Eco-Schools Green Flag award. This is testament to our continuing focus on Sustainability and green initiatives across the school, over the last few years. Eco-Schools is the largest educational programme on Planet Earth, implemented in 70 countries, involving 56,000 schools, engaging 1.4 million teachers and 19.4 million students, and SISD is now part of it!
Secondary Art Junk Kouture
Recycling and fashion design is well underway for our Secondary Art students! Junk Kouture is a worldwide fashion competition for young people from Grade 8 and above; the aim is to creature couture pieces re-using, re-purposing and recycling materials, focused on sustainability and the environment. At SISD, we run a weekly after-school activity where students have the opportunity to develop fashion concepts, illustration and dress making skills, using a wide range of materials and expanding their imagination and creativity.
We celebrated Planting Day, a day dedicated to the planting of flowers as we look forward to the start of spring. The Secondary Green Team brought flower seeds and potted plants to mark the day, the Primary Green Team planted Spekboom in the Thinking Garden, and the Early Years students will be planting seeds throughout the week.
SISD is participating in the Emirates Environmental Group's annual drive to actively express our commitment towards protecting our environment, as part of their Can Collection initiative. Aluminium cans can be deposited in the collection bin in the reception area.
We celebrated World Bee Day, and our buzzy friends really do need our help! On this occasion, our Secondary Students have decided to build a Bee Hotel. World Bee Day is an opportunity to put bees at the centre of our conversations and encourage actions for their survival.
Global Earth Day
We celebrated Global Earth Day at SISD, and the theme this year is 'Invest in our Planet'. To continue our support of the Dubai Can Initiative, our community made a conscious effort today to reduce the use of single-use plastic and to bring in waste-free compostable snacks to help reduce our carbon footprint. Our Secondary students also pledged to cut their carbon footprint every day, on a big board that was set up in the atrium.
Water bottles - Dubai Can
On the 15th February 2022, His Highness Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, launched Dubai Can.
We are proud to be associated with and are committed to this important city-wide sustainability initiative by the Crown Prince of Dubai.
As #Sustainability is one of our four core values, SISD is committed to saving our planet and doing all we can to reduce the use of single use plastic bottles. Through the 44 communal water fountains we have installed on our school campus, we save around 20,000 water bottles per month.
At SISD, we now have an organic garden and composting bins, and our goal is to reduce food waste in landfills and enrich our soil with nutrients. How? By composting!
We have celebrated #WorldWaterDay, where our community came together, all dressed in blue. The students discussed the importance of water, looked at ways to reduce water waste, and took part in a number of activities relating to reducing the consumption of water in their daily lives. They also continued to sign the water pledge boards around the campus.
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