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Sustainability update


Phase 1 of the solarPV installation programme has been completed at King Edward VI Aston School and now live. The programme is almost complete at King Edward VI Northfield School for Girls and King Edward VI Sheldon Heath Academy.

At King Edward VI Aston School, all installation works are complete along with final testing and commissioning.

Access cat ladders have been ordered for installation.

G99 form (legal document required for the PV installation to connect to the National Grid) was received and the system is now live and supplying the school.

Aston School  PV system specification is:
Number of PV modules  110
PV generator Output  55.55 kWp
Spec. annual yield  810.89 kWh/kWp
PV Generator Energy (AC grid) 45,107 kWh/Year 
School consumption 29,573 kWh/Year 
National Grid export  15,535 kWh/Year 
CO2 Emissions avoided  21,171 kg/Year 

Estimated school’s electricity demand to be supplied by solarPV is 10-15% per year.

At King Edward VI Northfield School for Girls all works at roof level and plant rooms are now complete and the scaffolding has been removed.

The roofing contractor is due to perform a roof penetration so the PV cabling can pass through a water-tight seal and be connected to the electrical distribution boards internally.

Final testing and commissioning work is to be scheduled.

A G99 form was received so as soon all works are complete, the system can go live.

NSG solarPV system specification is:
Number of PV modules (panels) 326
PV generator Output  164.63 kWp
Spec. annual yield  834.46 kWh/kWp
PV Generator Energy (AC grid) 137,562 kWh/Year 
School consumption 38,719 kWh/Year 
National Grid export  98,843 kWh/Year 
CO2 Emissions avoided  64,567 kg/Year

Estimated school’s electricity demand to be supplied by solarPV is 30% per year.

At King Edward VI Sheldon Heath Academy work is progressing well. All the PV is installed, and the electricians are scheduled to complete connecting the system to the electrical distribution boards during the May half-term week, prior to the final testing and commissioning.

The G99 form was received so as soon works are complete the system can go live.

KESHsolarPV system specification is:
Number of PV modules  258
PV generator Output  130.29 kWp
Spec. annual yield  754.14 kWh/kWp
PV Generator Energy (AC grid) 98,404 kWh/Year 
School consumption 37,126 kWh/Year 
National Grid export  61,278 kWh/Year 
CO2 Emissions avoided  46,181 kg/Year 

Estimated school’s electricity demand to be supplied by solarPV is 10-12% per year.

Phase 2 – installation at the remaining Academy Trust schools is being planned, along with any required roof repairs, for early summer with completion due by the end of August 2024.

New Foundation Energy Contract

The energy contract for the Foundation and Academy Trust has just been renewed for 12 months from April with our supplier being Shell Energy. The energy for this contract is from a 100% renewable energy supplier, generating their electricity using biomass.  They are REGO backed (REGO, Renewable Energy Guarantees of Origin certificate, provides transparency to consumers about how much of their energy comes from renewable sources).  A short-term contract approach has been taken due to the current volatility of the energy market.

Foundation Sustainability Strategy

The Foundation Sustainability Strategy and supporting documentation is currently being reviewed and will include measurable objectives and targets in line with the Department for Education’s Sustainability Leadership and Climate Action Plan initiative.

Energy Sparks

King Edward VI King’s Norton School for Boys are now signed up to receive support and weekly alerts from Energy Sparks who kindly offered their service free of charge until September. KNSB electrical and gas meter information was sent to Energy Sparks for them to start analysing and advising on how to reduce energy/carbon emissions and reduce costs.

King Edward VI Lordswood School for Girls use of the Energy Sparks dashboard to reduce energy usage, contributed to by the LED lighting project savings, has resulted in a decrease in energy usage of -8.47 % for the 11 months between 1st May 2023 and 31st March 2024 as shown below:

The Energy Sparks analysis for Aston School also helps demonstrate the energy savings significantly contributed to by the LED project as per the two bar graphs below.  The first one shows electrical usage from March 2022 to March 2023 and the second one shows electrical usage from March 2023 to March 2024. Looking at the two graphs after the summer break it can be seen that the peaks on the second graph are lower in value (below 6000 kWh) than the corresponding dates for the year before (between 6000 – 7000 kWh).

Small battery recycling

King Edward VI King’s Norton School for Boys has now joined our other schools in recycling used small batteries (AAA, AA, 9v, coin cells etc).  We have engaged with Valpak, through the ‘Recycle-more’ website, who provide collection boxes for depositing used batteries and then collect them when full, all free of charge.

King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools Sustainability Discussion

A meeting took place between the student representatives from CHG and CHB Eco Societies and Martin Hathaway, Sustainability Lead for the Foundation on 17th April.  This covered items such as sustainability initiatives that the schools are undertaking, the AT’s sustainability strategy and projects and support required going forward.

Let’s Go Zero’s climate action advisors to schools (West Midlands) also participated and added their experience and knowledge of next steps we should be doing.

A summary of progress to date, student level discussion at King Edward VI Camp Hill Schools:

  • Eco Committee of about 15 members meeting fortnightly or monthly, working on their Eco Schools’ Green Flag with a focus on Transport and Energy;
  • Students have been encouraging active travel with a competition to track the most steps and a park and stride initiative;
  • Meeting with the Head Teacher to discuss energy usage and have termly litter picks planned;
  • Weekly 6th form Eco Soc of 10 students doing talks, issues, assemblies as well as a student council of approx. 20 students who meet termly, across all years;
  • Initiatives have included: active travel week, veganuary, workshop, fashion show, mural and a painting picnic.

Let’s Go Zero (LGZ)

LGZ have identified a number of grants available for sustainability related projects which has been emailed out to the relevant schools’ Heads for consideration.

The report from the recent LGZ team’s sustainability audit at Aston School was presented for discussion with Aston and the resulting actions are being included in a Climate Action Plan being written for the school by LGZ.

LGZ have advised they would very much like to help our other schools create their own Climate Action Plan, in line with DfE guidance, which schools need in place along with a nominated Sustainability Lead, by 2025.  This would involve looking at progress to date, understanding challenges and opportunities and identifying priority actions moving forward, sharing useful resources, educational and financial, to help you succeed.  Please use this form to request Climate Action Advisor assistance from LGZ and they will set up a meeting.

They can offer free support for the school to calculate a carbon emissions baseline, using Eco Schools’ free online Count Your Carbon tool, assessing emissions across all three GHG scopes, including data on purchasing, travel, nature and curriculum as well as energy, water and waste. 

We would recommend signing up for free to Let’s Go Zero to show each school’s commitment to decarbonise, joining the approx. 3,000 schools in the UK who have joined to date, accessing the regular email updates and information on sustainability grants.


The Climate Action Countdown takes place, from 7 June – 5 July.  LGZ and their coalition partners have put together a whole calendar full of fun, free and creative activities and KS3-4 resources for inspiring climate action in the classroom. 

You can sign up to do as much or as little as you like. Schools will be sharing climate challenge stories and photos on social media during the month with the hashtag #ClimateActionCountdown, for the chance to win exciting daily eco-prizes.

Teachers, pupils, parents and community and school supporters can all register for the Climate Action Countdown.


As an option to raise money for eco initiatives, you can post an image of one of the sustainability activities you have going on currently, to be entered in a draw for £1,000 and additional support from Zellar.  Find out more here.