IT was party time in Ballybrown National School on Thursday when the school celebrated the awarding of its first Green Flag.
Parents, teachers, former teachers, pupils and a host of guests congregated in the school playground as the flag was raised by Oisín Mc Namara, of the Junior Infants Class and Ciara Gavin from Sixth Class. “The cheers as the flag was raised were as loud as any heard in Thomond Park the previous weekend,” school principal Joe Lyons said.
“It was a real team effort,” Mr Lyons continued, “and we had about 270 people on the team who all worked so hard.”
The team effort was co-ordinated by Margaret Hodgins and Breda McCarthy who led the Green Schools Committee.
The first Green Flag focuses on reducing, re-using and recycling waste within the school and over the two-years of the campaign, the weekly refuse output was cut from three bins to one. The school also developed a vegetable garden with assistance from caretaker Frank Coughlan and welcomed visitors to the school to advise on the project These included representatives of An Taisce, Limerick County Council, Mr Binman and Marvin the Magician who showed the pupils how to make litter disappear!
As the flag was raised last Thursday, Tim Toomey of the local Tidy Towns Committee was thanked for giving so generously of his time and for helping the children to plant trees in the school grounds.
Sixth-class pupil, James Corneille also came in for special mention for the poster he designed to highlight the message of the Green Flag campaign.
In fact, so eye-catching was his design that it was made into a sign which is now displayed on the external wall of the car-park.
Councillor Michael Sheehan, Leas Cathaoirleach of Limerick County Council, was among the invited guests at Thursday’s ceremony and he encouraged the children to pass on their commitment to the environment to their parents and grandparents.
There was music, singing, the Green School tongue-twister and the Green School rap all added to the entertainment which of course included celebration cakes.