Interview with Eva Cardell
„Källby Gard – Safe School“
Dear Mrs. Cardell, your school is well known not only in Sweden but also internationally because of its innovative and integrating activities to enhance the health and safety of your pupils and staff. How and when did you start to improve the safety and health of your school?

We started 1994 when we planned to change the schoolyard to be more developing and exciting. The health project started 2001 with the “school turn” a walk around the schoolyard.

Until now it is not the regular case that a school offers activities to improve the health and safety of the pupils and the staff. What were the backgrounds to do this?

In Europe there is a threatening development that children become more and more fat, which means that their health is in danger. That’s why we thought that we have to do something against it and we started to implement a lot of moving activities.

But we also worried about the safety of our pupils. That’s why we started our safety work. Herewith we wanted to get answers to following questions: “What happens at the schoolyard. Which are the risks in the environment.” So we intended to look for it and then we started with to report accidents and incidents at our school.

Can you please describe some of your activities you are carrying out at your school. How are pupils, staff and the parents involved to enhance health and safety?

We have different councils, as pupils council, food council, break council, safe school group, pupils safety controllers. These councils consist of pupils, staff, parents and the principal. These groups are responsible for one task in the enhancement of the health and safety at school.
The pupils are involved in the work with the environment and they also are involved in the environment tours.
To improve health we have break activities, physical activities with every class, sport- training in the afternoon open for all pupils and collaboration with sport clubs.
To ensure the safety all break hosts have yellow jackets in order to be visual.
We create a safe environment in the changing room before and after physical training, always having adults there.

What are the results of your activities? Could you notice that your pupils and staff is safer and healthier now? And how did the pupils and staff react on the activities at your school?

The pupils always have something to do during their breaks. They also have a raised awareness if something is bad or dangerous in their environment.
We can also see that the pupils can do more for example when they walk to the wood or run in the physical training.
The pupils like these activities and are more concentrated and healthier.

What are you planning to do in future for your school?

Now we look for the equipments at the schoolyard together with the pupils and some of the teachers to make them more secure.
During November we will have a competition between all classes, which class can walk most “school turns” which competition is also for the staff.
I think it’s important to be a role model for the pupils.

Thank you very much!

| Bild: | As a principal of Källby Gård Eva Cardell is responsible for the education and the environment of pupils and the staff. She is developing the environment more and more and gets the pupils involved.
Furthermore she is also responsible for the programme to designate all the schools in Götene municipality to be “Safe, secure and developing schools”.
Källby Gårds work to make the school safe and secure have raised at lot of interest both in Sweden and other countries. Källby Gård have had a lot of visitors and Eva Cardell attended conferences in Swedish schools and at Swedish rescue services agency.

Eva Cardell
Källby Gård
Götene Community, Sweden