SCHOOL PACT: Principality’s schools commit to Energy Transition
All of the Principality’s educational establishments* have committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by signing the School Energy Transition Pact, focused on their areas of action. The signing ceremony was held on Wednesday 28 September, in the presence of H.S.H. Prince Albert II and representatives from the Government and institutions in Monaco.
The ceremony was divided into several parts. Before each school or university made its participation in the initiative official by signing its own commitment, Ms Isabelle Bonnal, the Commissioner General for the Department of Education, Youth and Sport, hailed “the strong, shared values on this collective journey” and described her “great pride in the thought that the entire community is stepping up and ready to engage in this universally popular initiative” as well as the role in “setting an example, demonstrating responsibility and fostering trust” being assumed by schools, which are a great tool for changing behaviours and shaping a citizenry that looks after the environment.
Ms Céline Caron-Dagioni, Minister of Public Works, the Environment and Urban Development, then set out the key pillars of the National Pact and the vital environmental context in which it has been developed. She was also delighted to see this cross-cutting project,** one that is so important to the Principality’s young people, becoming a reality: “This initiative concerns our children, our future. It is a fantastic opportunity that you are giving them.” She concluded her speech by talking about “collectively setting an example”.
Finally, Ms Annabelle Jaeger-Seydoux, Director of the Mission for Energy Transition, recalled the “amazing collaboration” and multiple strong and solid links between the Mission and the Department of Education, Youth and Sport, with regular visits to schools, a joint solar planter project with pupils at Monaco’s Vocational and Catering School, and more. This partnership will continue into the future with “special, tailored support for each educational establishment to help them with the operational implementation of the National Pact actions.”
The event drew to a close with presentations from two school leaders, Ms Isabelle Biancheri from Révoires primary school and Ms Sylvie Casazza from Cours Saint-Maur primary school. They presented the best practices in use at their schools and discussed the future actions they were committing to by signing the Pact. Both were also in no doubt that supporting young people aged 6–24 in schools and universities setting this kind of example would guarantee the success of this environmental initiative.
* The School Pact covers primary schools, lower secondary schools (collèges), upper secondary schools (lycées), the International University of Monaco (IUM) and the International School of Monaco (ISM)
** This project to develop a School Pact, the result of very close joint working between the Department of Education, Youth and Sport and the Mission for Energy Transition, required more than a year of regular meetings and lively discussions between the many stakeholders, including school leaders, teaching and non-teaching staff, educational advisors and several interested pupils.