Winners of national search for eco-friendly schools recognized
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has recognized the winners in the nationwide search for the most sustainable and environment-friendly schools for 2015.
Top winners in three different categories were the Foundation University in Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental; Bintawan National High School in Villaverde, Nueva Ecija; and Divisoria Elementary School in Santiago City, Isabela.
The recognition ceremony was held Monday at the Fisher Mall Activity Center in Quezon City, as part of the celebration of the National Environmental Awareness Month this November.
Now on its fourth year, the National Search for Sustainable and Eco-Friendly Schools was organized by the DENR’s Environmental Management Bureau (EMB), together with the Department of Education, Commission on Higher Education, and private partners.
The competition aimed to recognize educational institutions with the best eco-friendly and sustainable programs and practices.
DENR Undersecretary and concurrent EMB Director Juan Miguel Cuna was elated over the overwhelming response of entries from primary, secondary and tertiary schools nationwide.
“We were amazed by their creativity and commitment of the winners and other participants in implementing eco-friendly practices,” Cuna said. “We need to start teaching our kids as early as we can to take responsibility in safeguarding our environment.”
He added: “Schools are dynamic focal points of learning and powerful vehicles of change. Parents and teachers can work together to spread the wonders of living an environmentally-smart lifestyle.”
The private partners included Smart Communications, One Meralco Foundation Inc., Nestlé Philippines, and Land Bank of the Philippines.
Other winners in the primary school category were Ara-Al Elementary School in La Carlota City, Negros Occidental (second place) and Bonuan Boquig Elementary School in Dagupan City, Pangasinan (third place).
For the high school category, other winners were Baguio City National High in Baguio City (second place) and Sumoroy Agro-Industrial School in Palapag, Norther Samar (third place).
St. Paul University in Dumaguete City, Negros Occidental, and University of La Salette in Santiago City tied for second place, and Central Bicol State University in Pili, Camarines Sur won third place in the tertiary level.
First placers received P50,000 and an additional P25,000 for being automatic recipients of Landbank Green Leadership Award. The second and third placers got P40,000 and P30,000, respectively.
The following received P20,000 each under the Meralco Energy Leadership Awards for programs and projects promoting energy and electricity conservation: Bonuan Boquig Elementary School of Dagupan City, Pangasinan for the elementary school category; Tiwi Agro-Industrial School of Tiwi, Albay for the high school category; and the Universidad de Zamboanga in Tetuan, Zamboanga City for the college category.
Recipients of the Nestlé Water Leadership Award were also given P20,000 each for initiating water-related programs, projects and activities. These were Bonuan Boquig Elementary School for the elementary school category; Divisoria High School in Santiago City, Isabela for the high school category; and the University of the Cordilleras in Baguio City for the college category.
The nationwide search was part of the Philippine initiative in support of the ASEAN Environmental Education Plan 2014-2018 and the ASEAN Environment Year 2015, with the theme: “Empowering the Youth for a Green ASEAN Community.”