Pontycymer Nursery is the first Nursery in Wales to be awarded not one but two National Awards. Not only have they become the first Nursery in Wales to receive the National Quality Award but they have also become the first Bridgend School to achieve the Platinum Eco-Schools Award.
To achieve the National Quality Award, the school has been actively involved in the Healthy School Scheme initiative since 2001. The scheme is run by the Welsh Government and support for schools and nurseries is available from Public Health Wales’s local public health teams.
The school has shown a commitment to developing the seven health topics covered by the scheme - food and fitness, mental and emotional health and wellbeing, personal development and relationships, substance use and misuse, environment, safety and hygiene.
Joan Roberts, Quality Award Assessor, said: “The healthy schools work is embedded in everything that is done at Pontycymer Nursery, with all sectors of the school community committed to its aims”.
“For a small school with few members of staff, it is amazing how many positive initiatives are in place”.
The assessors’ report made no recommendations for further developments in any of the seven categories
Head teacher Stephanie Evans added: “We are absolutely delighted to have achieved this award.
Lin Cooper, Public Health Wales Healthy Schools Practitioner for Bridgend, said: “I am extremely proud of the school’s achievement, which reflects the hard work and dedication of pupils, teachers, staff, governors, and families.
“Pontycymer is truly an exemplar nursery that has demonstrated a commitment to wellbeing in all areas of school life including healthy eating, active play, environmental work and emotional health”.
Eco-Schools is an international programme encouraging schools to ‘live more lightly’ on planet earth. The Platinum is a special award celebrating a long term commitment to reducing environmental impact. The whole school community action plan for positive change thinking about Energy, Water, Transport, School Grounds, Healthy Living, Global Citizenship, Litter and Waste Minimisation.
Matthew Bunt, Eco-Schools Officer for Bridgend said “Pontycymer Nursery is without doubt a flagship Eco-School. They have a real ‘can do’ attitude whether they are tackling a project to put solar panels on their roof to make green energy or making open fire briquettes from waste paper for their local community.’