Quairading wins United Nations World Environment Day - Environmental Schools Award
An innovative and inclusive programme tracking the movement of animals in the local Nature Reserve has been awarded first prize in the Environmental Schools category at the United Nations World Environment Day Awards, held in Melbourne over the weekend.
Mrs Pauline Wray, Principal led a delegate of representatives from Quairading District High School and enthusiastically accepted the award on behalf of all involved in the project. “It was an honour to accept the award on behalf of our students, staff and community partners. The award highlights that we can contribute to environmental best practice on a local scale as part of a global community. This project also reflects the innovation, dedication and determination of our staff to provide relevant, innovative and imaginative curriculum to our students.”
The students place motion sensor cameras in the Quairading Nature Reserve, a small pocket of virgin bush on the outskirts of Quairading. They then retrieve data from the camera onto notebook technology and share it with their community partners, which include the Environmental Officer of the Shire of Quairading, Friends of Quairading Nature Reserve and WWF. Students learn about the flora and fauna of the Reserve, Indigenous history and perspectives of the Nature Reserve and the impact of feral animals. Other activities involved in the project include producing the artwork for a Noongar Seasons information sign for the Reserve, walking the Reserve with local Noongar elders and community, species identification treks with Mike Griffiths from WWF and artistic field walks. Further plans for the project include ‘Bushwalker’s Identification Cards’ so visitors can identify species in the reserve and to further develop the statistical information gathered to create long term records of sighted species in the Reserve.
The judges recognised the Quairading District High School Nature Reserve Project as having ‘the real potential to make a great change to the Quairading Nature Reserve, highlighting it as a world class pilot for protecting and saving native species’.
Mr Kim Guelfi, Regional Director of the Wheatbelt said “Through this project, students at Quairading District High School enjoy a close connection to their environment and strong relationships with community groups. Staff at QDHS have successfully used innovation to address geographical isolation and disadvantage, providing strong educational and social outcomes for rural students.”
Finally, a word from the students: “I am proud to be a part of something so amazing and something so great for the environment and I am delighted to see that students, teachers and parents are as happy to be doing this as I am.” If you would like to see the students article please click here.