A Touch of Green

Adding a touch of "green" to education.

It is not coincidental that Little Arthur Independent is based on a small ecological school garden polytunnelfarm. The school was originally set up to provide a more environmentally inspired education for island children, one in which care of and concern for the natural world wild flowers on Little Arthur Farmwas put high on the agenda as a topic of primary importance for the future generation. Our courses reflect this concern for the environment. Our Key Stage 3 English courses, for instance, are built around subjects worthy of consideration so that children learn not only how to read and write but are challenged to think more deeply about the ethics of how the environment and other people are treated. We include work on deforestation, the destruction of rural communities and Fair Trade.

At IGCSE level, we are almost unique in offering an Environmental Management course for the 14-16 age group. This challenges young people to understand how eco- agriculturesystems work, how man uses and, often, abuses these systems and requires them to tackle these thorny issues, balancing conflicting demands. Again, we are almost the only UK college offering IGCSE Agriculture. Although this course does require that muckspreading...agriculture student at work students sit their exams at our centre in the Isles of Scilly, it provides an opportunity for those interested in farming to learn how animals and crops can be nurtured, the basics behind farm buildings and infrastructure and even a grounding in farm accounting systems.

In offering these packs, we seek to make available to younger students courses more free range chickens on Little Arthur Farmdedicated to sustainable/green ideals and provide a positive and practical alternative for students and parents committed to these principles.

To underline our commitment to  "green" education, our school office, from where our courses are administered, has always been situated right in the centre of the farm, in a converted barn. This year we have been fortunate to secure DEFRA funding through the Isles of Scilly Local Action group which has allowed us to acquire  vastly improved facilities, still centrally placed on the farm. This will enable us to expand the number of students we are able to tutor and provide an even more efficient service.