School hopes for savings with solar panel plan

Latest education news from the Suffolk Free Press, suffolkfreepress.co.uk, @sfpsudbury on Twitter
Latest education news from the Suffolk Free Press, suffolkfreepress.co.uk, @sfpsudbury on Twitter

A primary school in Halstead is hoping to become a ‘solar school’, with fundraising having already started.

Holy Trinity Primary School has launched its plans to become a solar school, needing to raise £10,010 by July 2016 to install solar panels on the school roof.

Friday saw the start of a series of fundraising events with a school disco run by the Parent Teachers and Friends Association, which raised £175.

Thursday’s parents evening will be the official launch.

Karl Handy, head of computing and Holy Trinity Solar Schools coordinator, said: “I’m hopeful we will raise the money. I think it can be done.

“I’ve already got pupils and parents coming in with ideas. They are really up for it, it’s capturing their imagination.”

The PTFA hopes to get the whole community chipping in with events including quizzes, cake sales and sponsored walks.

Donations can be made online at www.solarschools.org.uk/holytrinityhalstead

Installing solar panels would add around £1,000 to the schools’ budget every year.

The school also feels the solar panels would provide a powerful learning resource for the children, helping them to understand how they can cut carbon and protect the planet.

The school has been named as just one of 20 on this year’s national Solar Schools project.

The initiative is run by carbon cutting charity 10:10 in partnership with Good Energy, the 100 per cent renewable electricity supplier.

Mr Handy added: “With the help of pupils, staff, parents, friends and local businesses we hope to install solar panels to bring educational and financial & environmental benefits to our school and local community for many years to come.”

Charmaine Coutinho, from Good Energy, said: “The Solar Schools project is a fantastic way to promote climate change education, and it’s great to see the pupils at Holy Trinity Primary School, Halstead engaging with solar power.

“At Good Energy our vision is to create a cleaner, greener Britain and Solar Schools has that in buckets.

“Education, community and sustainability all working hand in hand, bringing sunshine into our classrooms.”

Cecily Spelling, Solar Schools project manager, 10:10 said: “We’re so excited to have Holy Trinity Primary School, Halstead on board this year.

“It’s been a turbulent start to their journey with the proposed changes to solar subsidies – the Feed in tariff, but the team haven’t let it phase them.

“They’ve got a year to get the panels up to retain the Fit and with all the enthusiasm we have seen to date and the support of Halstead, I’ve got no doubt they’ll reach their target in no time.”