This publication sets out the educational
and social benefits to young people of
learning in a sustainable school. It is
written for leadership teams in primary and
secondary schools and other educational
settings across England. Under five themes,
it sets out 15 top tips based on the impact
of sustainable schools and education
for sustainable development on school
improvement and young people’s well-being
as defined by Every Child Matters outcomes.
We hope these will be useful in the context
of schools striving to enable learners to
become successful, confident individuals, and
responsible, caring citizens. The themes are:
1. Improving schools: enhancing young
people’s learning and well-being.
2. Bringing young people’s learning
3. Developing young people’s participation.
4. Contributing to school, community and
5. Modelling sustainability practices, thinking
Each theme sets out the tips together with a
short summary of the evidence. The sources of
evidence are listed at the end of the booklet.
Evidence of the impact of sustainable
schools is supported by growing research,
policy, and practitioner literature, in the
main from the UK but also internationally.
Multiple sources of evidence now show that
being a sustainable school raises standards
and enhances well-being. This is because
sustainable schools engage young people in
their learning therefore improving motivation
and behaviour; they also promote healthy
school environments and lifestyles. In addition,
the evidence shows that sustainable schools
advance community cohesion by making
valuable connections between the school and
its parents, carers and the wider community.