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FAQs

  1. How do I register my school on the Eco-Schools programme?
  2. How do I find a list of Eco-Schools in Northern Ireland?/Is my school already registered?
  3. How do I apply for an award?
  4. Is there a deadline for applying for our Green Flag?
  5. What happens during a Green Flag assessment?
  6. How do I get practical help with the programme?
  7. How often do we need to renew our Green Flag?
  8. Can my school get any financial help?
  9. Are there other schools in my area who can advise us?
  10. Who do I contact for help?
  11. How do I become a Green Flag assessor?
  12. What do I do if I have forgotten my log-in details?
  13. Can I use the Eco-Schools logo?   
  14. Where can I download templates for the Environmental Review and Action Plan?  
  15. What type of schools can join Eco-Schools?  
  16. Does a school have to go through each award stage?   

1. How do I register my school on the Eco-Schools programme?

100% of schools in Northern Ireland are now registered with Eco-Schools. To find out who the contact is in your school contact Eco-Schools on 028 9073 6920 or eco-schools@keepnorthernirelandbeautiful.org.

2. How do I find a list of Eco-Schools in Northern Ireland?/Is my school already registered?

In January 2015 Northern Ireland became the first country in the world to have 100% of schools registered with Eco-Schools.

3. How do I apply for an award?

Bronze and Silver awards are self-assessed.  The criteria can be found on our website.  When you believe your school has met all the criteria, you can log in with your email address and password and download your certificate.

Green Flag awards are assessed by a team of trained volunteer assessors.  Complete the online application within the School Zone, adding your Environmental Review, Action Plan and Eco-Code to the Resource Library where they will then be automatically attached to your application. Add your monitoring data to the Data Zone and this will also be automatically attached to your application. Your application will be acknowledged by the Eco-Schools office and, if the application is approved, we will be in touch to arrange an assessment visit for your school.  If there are any queries with the application, we will contact you to discuss them

4. Is there a deadline for applying for our Green Flag?

With the programme growing every year we are making a few changes to the application process to ensure that everyone who applies by the given deadlines are assessed on time. There are two suggested deadlines this year – one for renewals and one for new Green Flags. As always you can submit your Green Flag application at any time of the year but these are the deadlines for a guaranteed assessment in the 2018/19 school year, schools applying after these dates might not be assessed by the end of June.

  • Green Flag Renewals – Thurs 24th January 2019 – this is the deadline for all schools who are renewing their Green Flags this year. Assessments will be scheduled between February and May. Some renewal schools may not receive a site visit, see the website for more details.
  • New Green Flags – Fri 15th March 2019 – this is the deadline for all schools who are going for their first Green Flag this year. Assessments will be scheduled between April and June.

5. What happens during a Green Flag assessment?

The whole assessment should only take between one and two hours.  The two assessors will expect the following to occur during an assessment [they do not expect a formal presentation as the report provides all this information]:

  • Review all the relevant documentation: Eco-Code, the minutes of any meetings [in any format], your environmental review and action plan;
  • View the Eco-Schools Notice Board;
  • Meet the Eco-Committee;
  • Have a tour around the school preferably led by the Eco-Committee;
  • Meet pupils from a variety of classes and age groups; and
  • View the results of various activities.

The assessing team will recommend a pass or fail or maybe a pass following certain recommendations. 

If your school is successful, you will receive a Green Flag, Certificate and an Assessment Report.

6. How do I get practical help with the programme?

Eco-Schools in Northern Ireland works closely with a number of education and environmental organisations to help deliver the programme and all 11 of the local councils support the programme. Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful could not successfully deliver the programme without the help of these organisations. If you are a school in the programme and need any practical assistance with any of the topics please contact our Delivery Partners.  Their contact details can be found in the Partners section.

7. How often do we need to renew our Green Flag?

Eco-Schools is a programme of continual reduction of your school's environmental impact. As such, you must renew your Green Flag every two years.  

8. Can my school get any financial help?

Periodically, there are grants and financial assistance for schools on the Eco-Schools programme.  These will be advertised on our website at www.keepnorthernirelandbeautiful.org.

9. Are there other schools in my area who can advise us?

You can find a map of Green Flag schools on this website. Schools who have achieved their Green Flag should be able to offer you advice.

10. Who do I contact for help?

In the first instance, please contact the Eco-Schools office on 028 9073 6920.

11. How do I become a Green Flag assessor?

Our volunteer Green Flag assessors are fully trained and Police Checked.  We usually organise two training events each year.  Each assessor should be able to commit to undertaking at least two assessments each year.  You can choose to assess schools which are convenient for you.  Assessors are reimbursed for travel expenses to assess schools.

For further information, please contact the Eco-Schools Office on 028 9073 6920 or email eco-schools@keepnorthernirelandbeautiful.org.

12. What do I do if I have forgotten my log-in details?

Contact the Eco-Schools office on 028 9073 6920 or email eco-schools@keepnorthernirelandbeautiful.org with your school name and postcode so we can confirm your log-in details.

13. Can I use the Eco-Schools logo?

Schools can only use the Eco-Schools logo once they have achieved their Green Flag award. To obtain a copy of the logo please email eco-schools@keepnorthernirelandbeautiful.org providing your school name and postcode.

14. Where can I download templates for the Environmental Review and Action Plan?

You can download templates to help you carry out an Environmental Review and design your Action Plan in the Process section.

15. What type of schools can join Eco-Schools?

Any type of school can join Eco-Schools. This includes nurseries, primary schools, post-primary schools, special schools, children’s centres and pupil referral units.  If you are unsure whether you are eligible to join the Eco-Schools programme, please contact the Eco-Schools office on 028 9073 6920 or email eco-schools@keepnorthernirelandbeautiful.org.

16. Does a school have to go through each award stage?

Schools can choose to go through each award stage (Bronze, Silver and Green Flag) but this is not compulsory. A school may obtain their Bronze award and then decide to work towards Green Flag straight away. Alternatively, a school could go straight to Green Flag from registration, depending on the level of work that has been completed.