A GREEN-fingered woman who has been praised for her enthusiasm has been nominated for a Worcestershire Education Award.

Sara Bankes, the eco-coordinator at Bredon Hill Academy, near Evesham has been nominated for the Unsung Hero Award.

Miss Bankes said: “It feels wonderful to be nominated and it comes as a complete shock. My role is to encourage children to become keen gardeners and wildlife enthusiasts. Nature should be valued and important. It is good to teach the children to respect the environment.

“We take gardening seriously at the school and are constantly improving our gardens. We take pride in what we do.”In 2009 the first allotment was installed at the school. Since then hundreds of trees have been added to the school grounds in order to develop the environment and encourage further wildlife.

Miss Bankes runs nature enrichment sessions for KS3 pupils in the school gardens and works on how to improve wild life areas and promote the environment. The school has adopted chickens and guinea pigs which are kept in the gardens. Miss Bankes said: “I come in everyday to feed the animals – I love my job. It is nice to work in a beautiful school with wonderful grounds and create resources for teachers to take their children out. I spend a lot of my time outside. I enjoy creating a lovely environment.

“It is rewarding to see how much the children enjoy the gardens and taking part. I tell the children to stand tall and be proud of their skills, so I have to do the same.” Emma Lloyd, who nominated Miss Bankes said: “Sara has inspired pupils and teachers alike in their thirst for knowledge of the outdoors and how to incorporate the area into their learning experiences.”


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