Before completing your action plan, you should carry out the Learning About Forests audit.
Creating the Action Plan
1. Audit Review
- Using the data from your audit, identify opportunities to improve your school grounds and/or local community forested site including planting trees, shrubs and other forest ecosystem plants that will support native wildlife.
2. Group Brainstorming
- In small groups, brainstorm possible courses of action. Groups can be assigned specific issues to address. Alternatively, all groups can be assigned the same prominent issues to achieve a greater variety of interesting solutions.
- As a team, discuss and agree on the most effective solutions. Compile these solutions into a final action plan. Below you will find a sample action plan for reference and a blank action plan that the Eco-Action Team can populate with their specific plan of action.
- Assign tasks to appropriate individuals within the team and across the school. Agree on measurable outcomes and realistic timeframes in which tasks can be completed.
3. Execution of Tasks
- Set aside time for students to carry out the activities they have assigned themselves and notify other staff and students of the responsibilities assigned to them. Frequent check-ins and/or reminders are encouraged.
- If needed, provide training to staff and students on implementing the Learning About Forests campaign, for example, how to measure tree diameter (DBH) and tree canopy, identify forest invasive species, and how to remove invasive species safely.
- Set up the school for success. For example, hold an assembly or create a performance or art gallery to educate the whole school about the importance of our forests in our community.
- Communicate with facilities managers to agree on grounds maintenance plans that advance your goals. Involve community members or organizations with expertise in relevant areas, such as forest management, wildlife biology, or tree health to help you carry out your plans.
- Set a review date to revisit your action plan as a group.
- Analyze how far you have come and identify what else you can do. Celebrate small successes!
- Schedule a follow-up Learning About Forests audit, after your campaign or project is complete, to measure the effectiveness of your program.
- Calculate the costs incurred and savings related to the changes put in place, as well as perceived or quantifiable improvements in planting trees or enhancing forested sites. This may be an objective a community partner can help with such as a non-profit organization or the local county forester.
- Add a section to your school's website that shows pictures of your school grounds or community forested site.
- Use the school’s communication channels (broadcasting channels, assemblies, staff meetings, morning announcements, etc.) to share results, achievements and development plans for the future.
- Prepare a school notice board showing infographics, achievements and ways for students and staff to get involved and take action throughout the community.
- Involve the local press and radio to let the greater community know about the school’s Forestry campaign and how they can support your efforts.
- Collaborate with another school in the area to deepen the Eco-Action Plan’s impact.
- Contact another Eco-Schools country participating in the LEAF program and share data and actions.
- Create a forest ecosystem in your school with recycled art
Action Plan Forms