The Ladies’ College has been presented with a special Award for Community Impact from the Institute for Research in Schools (IRIS) following a number of pieces of student-led independent research, including the submission of a research project that resulted in reducing the school’s carbon footprint.
IRIS’s award has acknowledged the work of the Ladies’ College as a whole with special recognition for Head of Science, Dr Karen Marshall. Dr Marshall is both a teacher and a scientist who is passionate about working with the girls to carry out original scientific research with the aim of improving the community’s environmental impact.
Commenting on the award win, Dr Marshall, said: “I’m thrilled to have attended the awards ceremony on behalf of The Ladies’ College. This award highlights the fantastic research our students undertook in 2019, where they created a project identifying the school’s carbon footprint.
“Through this project, the girls calculated how many solar panels would fit on the roof of the school and the energy it could provide. Three years later, the school roof is covered with solar panels and there are more bikes being brought to school than before. I’m incredibly proud.”
The Ladies’ College is now in its third year of unique research projects, with the support of the Institute of Research in Schools. Their current research initiative is to take more than 50% of food waste from the canteens into its own wormery, as well as creating a plan of action to plant more trees and shrubs for shade and look at the effect that trees have on reducing pollution from the roads.
Daniele Harford-Fox, Principal of The Ladies’ College, added: “I’m delighted that the College has been awarded the IRIS Special Award for Community Impact. This pioneering research had no set answers like the experiments in the curriculum and it shows the difference that young people can make with their research.
“The Ladies’ College has been able to create space for the students to ask genuine research questions, seek answers that were not in textbooks and, with guidance but autonomy, construct methodologies and experiments that explore uncharted territory. The partnership with IRIS has had a significant impact on our girls, and I’m excited to see how the journey continues.”