Growing up green at Gin Gin

Nathan Freeman, general manager of Green Solutions Wide Bay and Stuart Napier, teacher at Gin Gin State High School showcase the sustainable process to students.

By Angela Norval

Given a big part of the national curriculum is sustainability, it was only natural that Gin Gin State High School wanted to be a part of Green Solutions Sustainable Schools Initiative.

Gin Gin State High School teacher and year level coordinator Mr Stuart Napier said while sustainability was taught across all areas, he believes it is best taught in agriculture.

“Finding a local farm that has taken on this ethos in such a huge way helped me and my colleagues choose to become a Green Solution Sustainable School,” he said.

“We visit a lot of agricultural venues with our agricultural students and this was one of the easiest to organise, while our visit was all that I expected and more, with students commenting that there were not expecting the visit to be this good.”

Through the Sustainable Schools Initiative, Green Solutions Wide Bay is welcoming schools in the area to learn more about environmental sustainability and ignite their interest in recycling green waste.

By offering this program to schools in the Wide Bay region, their aim is to educate the next generation of recyclers and the local community on the benefits of creating soil conditioners from green water, and encourage everyone to actively participate in doing something good for the planet.

Site tours are also tailored to the year level or learning unit.

Based on the school’s already extensive focus on composting and being environmentally aware, Mr Napier said through their visit to Green Solutions, students could now see what they do in agriculture on a small scale in a much larger way.

“It shows them that what we do at school in our compost is actually happening in industry.

“They will benefit from the compost we take from Green Solutions in the future and see the direct benefits it has on our fruit and vegetables we grow at school.

“When it comes to the classroom, students now knowing what they now know students will be able to implement this in their end of term reports.

“A big part of what we teach is practicing regenerative agriculture and using compost to add carbon to the school.

“In their report, students have to come up with a sustainable management plan to reduce the number of pests in our school plot.

“Enhancing the soil and the underground livestock – creates stronger plants, less susceptible to pests.”

But the learning doesn’t stop there as the Gin Gin State High School are also looking forward to working with Green Solutions further, having experts from their team give us some feedback on what we are doing at school can only enhance our operation, building on what we are already doing and going closer to our goal of net zero waste at our school.”