St Mary’s makes ocean conservation a priority despite lockdown

‘The ocean can be an ally in the fight against the virus,’ the Essex independent school said

St Mary’s School in Essex has stressed the importance of ocean conservation action amid the current coronavirus pandemic.

To mark World Oceans Day on 8 June, the senior school took on a challenge to design posters to educate the public on the impact of micro plastics in the ocean, as well as taking part in socially distanced litter picks.

During their online learning at home, the year eight geographers took inspiration from a video made by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), which launched their poster-making challenge.

The school said: “The girls were surprised to read that the health of the ocean is intimately tied to the health of humankind and that organisms discovered at extreme depths are used to speed up the detection of Covid-19.

“Amid the current coronavirus pandemic, ocean conservation and action is still of the upmost importance ­– the ocean can be an ally in the fight against the virus.”

Ocean conversation
A public information poster designed by St Mary’s year eight students for World Oceans Day


Sarah Wilding, head of geography and Eco-Schools co-ordinator at St Mary’s said: “As an island nation, the sea and what it has to offer us is a vital resource. We decided to focus on World Oceans Day, to highlight these important issues, but also as an Ambassador Eco-School, it is our responsibility to foster a sense of stewardship amongst our young people.

“St Mary’s supported the Keep Britain Tidy: Great Spring Clean Up campaign this year and despite lockdown, students carried out litter picks, many of which took place along the Essex coastline.”

Earlier in the school year, the year 10 eco team led a video conference on the preservation of marine life with schools in Australia, China, India and South Africa as part of a series of discussions on important global issues (pictured at top of page).

The schools involved were all members of Round Square, a network of 180 schools in 50 countries, of which St Mary’s is global member.

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