Written by Eleanor (Year 12) – Chair of School Council
OHS School Council is a vibrant platform for all of the pupils at OHS to have a voice and be involved in school life. This has been more important than ever at time when the school community has had to operate virtually. School Council has continued to be a hub for everyone’s participation during this time, creating and generating ideas for both change and positive reinforcement.
Sustainability was our first focus, and classes, with the help of their School Council Reps, as well as individual pupils, made excellent suggestions as to how OHS could move along the green path. Ideas around recycling featured strongly in the outcomes of our survey. As a result, the Green Prefects are planning a competition to design a poster by pupils for pupils to communicate what does and what does not go into recycling. Many girls also raised the vital point that we need to be careful not to create superfluous waste in the first place. This means we are now looking into ways in which we can reduce packaging and install food waste bins throughout the school.
There is a real desire to learn more about sustainability which will be addressed by inviting outside speakers who are experts in the field to teach us directly about climate change and what we can do. Dedicating specific PSHCE lessons to this topic will help to reinforce such thinking. Beyond meat-free Monday, many pupils are keen to see an expansion of vegetarian and vegan options that are sourced as locally and seasonally as possible. Transitioning to the use of purely sustainable palm oil is also on the agenda. Exciting events to encourage and celebrate sustainability at OHS in the future now include a Fairtrade Week, clothes swaps and a low-waste week. Twelve apple trees have already arrived to help and will create a re-wilding area in the form of an apple orchard, which could also create the foundation for a gardening club. So watch this space!
To consolidate the events of Neurodiversity week (15th to 19th March) we have most recently been looking at how we can continue to celebrate and further support Neurodiversity beyond this week. While feedback on this is still pouring in, a group of Sixth Formers have started a Neurodiversity Club, open to everyone Neurodivergent and Neurotypical as a space especially dedicated to discuss Neurodiversity as well as anything it might affect.