Sustainable Living International Primary and Secondary Schools Essay Competition


2018 Trust for Sustainable Living International Primary and Secondary Schools Essay Competition and Debate

Applications are invited for the 2018 Trust for Sustainable Living International Primary and Secondary Schools Essay Competition and Debate, eligible persons are welcome to apply for this program.

The Trust for Sustainable Living is pleased to invite schoolchildren around the world to write open letters to the soon-to-be-elected new UN Secretary General, outlining their ideas for practical climate action. The annual essay competition and debate are aimed at primary students (ages 7-11) and secondary students (ages 11-17), supported by Teacher Champions in formal and home schools.

Type: Competition

Value of Competition: One overall Grand Prize winner (plus Teacher Champion and parent) will win a free trip to the TSL 2018 Debates & Awards in the Seychelles, which will take place during the first week of July 2018. In addition, medals will be awarded in each category for the top ten essays and for the best individual and group contributions at the Debates.

To be taken at (country): The Challenge winners will be announced at the 2018 Debates & Awards in the Seychelles.

Eligible Countries: All

Eligibility: Students are invited to write an essay outlining their thoughts on climate action, in English, as follows:

Each student is invited to submit one essay in English, entitled:

Primary students (ages 7-11): ‘My plan to protect and manage our oceans, seas and marine resources’ (max. 400 words)

Secondary students (ages 11-17): ‘My plan to protect and manage our oceans, seas and marine resources’ (max. 600 words

For each category, schools are invited to submit up to 30 essays online. (These must be submitted by the Teacher Champion, using the login details provided at registration. We regret that paper and emailed copies cannot be accepted, and essays more than 10% over the word limit will be automatically rejected.)

Selection Proceess: An international panel of judges, drawn from experts and educationalists in the field, will select the winning entries for each age category. The essays will be judged for originality and creative thinking and the potential to contribute to a broad-ranging and constructive international dialogue on future pathways for climate action. The winning essays will be published on the competition website.

Number of Awardees: 5 finalists, 1 winner and lots of consolation prizes.

All participating students and Teacher Champions will be invited to attend the Debates & Awards.

Timeline/Duration of Competition: 

  • 7 September to 15 December 2017 – School/Teachers register to participate as Teacher Champions.
  • 15 December 2017 at midnight GMT  – Deadline for submission of essays (and Schools Sustainability Challenge videos).
  • 31 January 2018 – All schools notified of winning Finalists and Honourable Mentions, and invited to attend the Debates & Awards.
  • 31 May 2018 – Registration deadline for the Schools Debates & Awards (registration is compulsory to attend).
  • 2-7 July 2018 – International Schools Debates, Awards and Visits, Victoria, Seychelles. In addition to the Primary and Secondary School Debates, which will take place on consecutive days, participants will enjoy a special programme of ocean-themed visits and events, including CPD for Teacher Champions in support of the global, UNESCO-led Education for Sustainable Development programme. All participants other than the Grand Prize Winner are responsible for making their own travel arrangements (e.g. flights, transfers, accommodation, subsistence and miscellaneous costs).

How to Apply: Apply here

Application Deadline: 15th December 2017.

Visit Competition Webpage for details

Award Provider: The Trust for Sustainable Living (TSL)

Important Notes: Subscribe to the newsletter (using the form in the sidebar of ), to receive periodic updates and announcements about the competition.


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