Media release: Scottish schools top marks for sustainability, says Viridor

SCOTTISH schools are a hotbed of science and engineering talent. That was the message from the keenly-contested final of a Scotland-wide schools sustainability programme, held in Glasgow City Chambers yesterday (10th May).

The Engineering Development Trust’s Go4SET (Science, Engineering, Technology) programme, supported by leading recycling, renewables and waste firm, Viridor, saw schools from across Scotland undertake an intensive ten-week programme to design an eco-classroom of the future.

The schools, comprising of six S2 pupils, partnered with sponsor companies to research, design and build model classrooms incorporating new building, renewables and waste technologies before showcasing their work at regional hubs, followed by the Scottish national final.

Eight regional finalist schools from across the country joined Baillie James McNally, Glasgow’s City treasurer and Viridor’s Scottish communications manager, Martin Grey, in undergoing scrutiny of their ideas by a panel of expert judges.

The Scotland-wide award was secured by St. Maurice’s High School in Cumbernauld whilst the Glasgow regional winners were Bannerman High School.

Viridor’s Scottish communications manager, Martin Grey, said: “From wind farms to sustainable waste management, Scotland is undergoing a green revolution. As part of a company investing £800m in Scottish ‘next generation’ green infrastructure to translate zero waste from policy into practice, I was blown away by the ideas, commitment and enthusiasm of the pupils and their project teachers.

“If Scotland is to meet the ambitious sustainability targets we have set ourselves we will need a new generation of highly skilled scientists, engineers and business leaders.

“Working with groups from Baillieston to the Bridge of Dee I’ve watched young people work in teams, grow in confidence and open their eyes to a world of career choices.

“With young people like these, our future is bright.”

Baillie James McNally, who addressed the schools, added: “How we care for our environment is of increasing importance, in Glasgow, across Scotland and internationally.

“Go4SET is a programme which inspires young people to play their part through a range of projects which incorporate science and engineering.

“The young people I met, from Bannerman High in Glasgow to the national winners at St. Maurice’s, can be rightly proud of their achievements.

“Far from being the end of a process, the Scottish final marks the start of a lifetime of opportunities to apply the skills they have developed to benefit our communities and planet.”

Duncan McSporran, director EDT Scotland, concluded: “Go4SET really is a first rate programme designed to raise awareness amongst young adults. The first Scottish national final, supported by Viridor, demonstrated the excellent projects from all over Scotland and this made it difficult for the judges to come to a decision on the winning teams.

“The programme, which is part of the EDT continuum, provides a live STEM project which we hope will empower young people to make informed decisions about future career opportunities in science, engineering and technology.”

Notes for editors


  • The schools representing Scotland in the Go4SET National Final were:

Bannerman High School, Glasgow

Buckie High School, Moray

Craigie High School, Dundee

Grangemouth High School, Falkirk

Kilmarnock Academy, Ayrshire

Lathallan School, Aberdeen

St Maurice’s High School, Lanarkshire

Whitburn Academy, West Lothian


  • Part of the FTSE 250 Pennon Group, Viridor is recognised as one of Scotland’s leading recycling, renewable energy and resource efficiency partners, working with 96 per cent of Scottish local authorities and some of the biggest names in Scottish business such as Scottish Power, RBS, BAE Systems and Coca Cola Enterprises.
  • Operating some of nation’s most advanced network of recycling and waste infrastructures, the company is investing up to £800m in ‘next generation’ green infrastructure to turn Scottish zero waste policy into practice.


  • Go4SET is an environmentally-themed, ten-week science, engineering and technology (SET) project for S2 & Year8/9 pupils. The project phase begins with the launch event where teams are introduced to the Go4SET project and their company mentor. Following this the teams work on the project for ten weeks with support from their teacher and mentor. The project phase includes a company visit and a Celebration and Assessment Day where prizes are awarded in different categories.

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Contact: Martin Grey