Eco-Schools is a global programme engaging millions of children across 64 different countries, making it the largest natural world schools programme in the world.

The programme provides a framework for learning and action around nine topics – biodiversity, energy, litter, global citizenship, healthy living, grounds, transport, waste and water. It follows a very simple seven-step process to lead schools on their journey to achieving a Green Flag Award.

Once all seven steps are in place and project work in three topic areas has been demonstrated, nurseries can apply for their first Green Flag, which is exactly what Tops Day Nurseries did. In the past year all nurseries at Tops received their bronze and silver eco-schools award and in 2021 they were all awarded their Green Flag status.

In order to receive a Green Flag recognition, Tops had to undertake steps 5 and 6 of the Green Flag criteria. This involved monitoring the effectiveness of the Eco-Schools topic actions by collecting data, sending out surveys, with before and after photos, etc. Findings would then be communicated within the nursery and displayed on the eco-board.

Tops then needed to agree on the natural world statement that is drawn up by the children. The Eco-Code would reflect the topic actions being worked on and would be displayed on the eco-board.

Although nurseries must apply for the recognition, the Green Flag application is not a test but is a chance to celebrate all of the amazing work carried out! The application for Green Flag provides an opportunity for your Eco-Committee to showcase their fantastic work on the Seven Steps. Once submitted, it is reviewed by Karyn our Eco-Schools Delivery Officer, who will then arrange for a Green Flag assessment visit from one of our assessors.

Click here to find out what Tops have done in order to support Eco-Schools and achieve their Green Flag status.