Pupils will be busy bees as they save our native insects

BUZZING Students at St Albans Primary School get ready for the Polli:Nation project
BUZZING Students at St Albans Primary School get ready for the Polli:Nation project

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STUDENTS at St Alban’s Primary School and Park Community School at Havant are buzzing with excitement after their schools were chosen to protect Britain’s dwindling population of bees.

As part of the national Polli:Nation programme, students and staff will transform their outdoor spaces to become pollinator-friendly habitats.

The schools applied with Bohunt School at Liphook and The Petersfield School in October last year, and their group was one of three successful applications out of 260 others across the UK.

During three years, each of the schools will be supported by a Polli:Nation facilitator from Learning through Landscapes, the national school grounds charity responsible for the project.

The aim is for schools to grow more flowers, shrubs and trees, cut grass less often, leave insect nests and hibernation spots undisturbed and think carefully about whether to use pesticides.

Julie Newman, a teacher at St Alban’s Primary School, said: ‘We are absolutely thrilled to be a part of this project and honoured to be making a contribution to such important research. Polli:Nation gives the children a fantastic opportunity to develop their own environment to aid the declining population of pollinators.

‘At the same time, it also offers the perfect platform to consider our environment and pesticides on a global scale, while involving members of the local community.’

Once the project is fully under way, the schools will also have the opportunity to contribute vital data in a UK-wide pollinator survey from OPAL Imperial College.

David Hodd, project manager of Learning through Landscapes, said: ‘It’s critical that we address the declining numbers of pollinating insects in Britain and the support of schools and communities in Hampshire will certainly contribute to the overall success of the Polli:Nation programme.

‘We look forward to seeing the final results of the school’s projects.’

If you are interested in helping the schools with their Polli:Nation project then contact admin@st-albans.hants.sch.uk.