The Thistle - An E-Newsletter of Scotch College, Perth, Western Australia

Year Fives are getting prepared!

In less than two weeks you will no longer be able to receive 'single use' plastic bags when doing the grocery shopping. With changes to the Environmental Protection Act 1986 (WA), the ban comes in on 1 July.

Statistics suggest that around seven million plastic bags are littered in Western Australia annually and the fact that they do not break down means they are with us in some form to eternity.

The move brings WA in to line with a number of other Australian states and is a step towards catching up to the rest of the world. Interestingly, Fremantle had tried to implement a ban in recent years with no success.

cs world map

Fortunately, the Scotch College community is helping prepare our families for the necessary inconvenience that is just around the corner! In a joint project between Year 5 Art and French classes, the students are creating bags that complement their classes. Following successes from last year, the classes look at recycling, waste and the effects of low recycling and poor waste management on ocean creatures. They learn that the most affected are whales and turtles, the turtles thinking plastic bags are jelly fish and the whales thinking they are squid. With this in mind, the boys block print turtles and whales on one side of their bags. On the other, using the 'command' tense in French, they write,

Don't use a plastic bag!

Save a whale!


Don't use a plastic bag!

Save a sea turtle!

It has been brilliant to see so many campaigns in support of minimising the rubbish in our oceans. A particularly powerful installation is in Melbourne's Federation Square. In a partnership between Chris Hemsworth, Corona and Parley for Oceans, Hemsworth is depicted riding a wave of rubbish. It is a marketing dream but also a strong reminder of just how bad the situation has become, even at our supposedly pristine Rottnest Island.

For more on this see the video at this link. (

waste collage

The College community is doing a lot of other things to help us be at the forefront of minimising waste and I will write more about this in coming weeks. Meanwhile, make sure you are prepared for the changes from 1 July!

Mr David Kyle
Director of Community and Service