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Green Flag - Eco-Schools program

Last modified: 2023-11-25 by zachary harden
Keywords: ecoschools campaign | green flag | ecology | environmentalism |
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[Eco Schools flag]
image by António Martins, 7 April 2009

It is likely that this flag is never used without the words FEE on some location on the flag. This may therefore be an archivexillum ("template design") of the Green Flag.
António Martins, 7 April 2009

See also:

Other sites:

The Eco Schools campaign

The Eco Schools campaign originated in Denmark in the early 1990s. The idea of making school children environmentally aware was later taken over and developed by the Danish Friluftsradet and the campaign spread to other European countries. The flag and logotype was developed by a French design firm. The flag is an award given to those schools that achieve certain goals in relation to protecting the environment. In other words, it is a companion of the Blue flag of clean beaches.
Rolf Lindquist, Europeiska miljo flaggor [Lqu99a], Nordisk Flaggkontakt [nfk], No. 29 (Autumn), 1999.
Jan Oskar Engene, 17 March 2000

The Green Flag is awared to Eco-Schools as a mark of high achievement in environmental education and performance as part of the Eco-Schools Programme lead by FEE, Foundation for Environmental Education. Until 2001 the organization was called FEEE - Foundation for Environmental Education in Europe, but since now there are non-European members, the name was changed. FEE also awards the Blue Flag for beaches and marinas (presumably now they are also inscribed FEE instead of FEEE). Unlike the Blue Flag that is awarded for particular year and one which the year is inscribed in canton, the Green Flag apparently have no year on the flag itself (maybe because schools typically have less money to change flag every year then the marinas).
Željko Heimer, 17 April 2004

Eco-schools is a programme of FEE, Foundation for Environmental Education, which Secretariat is hosted by the Danish Outdoor Council. The Green Flag and Eco-schools symbols are copyright and owned by FEE.
Sérgio T. Santos, 15 July 2005

Eco-Schools is a programme for environmental management and certification, designed to implement sustainable development education in schools by encouraging children and youth to take an active role in how their school can be run for the benefit of the environment. Eco-Schools is one of the programmes of the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE - and, as such, it is implemented through FEE Member organizations (one per country). Currently, the Programme is being implemented by 46 delegations in 43 countries around the world, involving 27,000 schools, 6,000,000 students, 400,000 teachers and 4,000 local authorities.
Ivan Sache, 6 April 2009

Flag Variant

[Eco Schools flag variant]
image by Randy Young, 04 February 2016

I recently, though, came across a variant of the Eco-Schools flag that can be seen on the program's website. This variant is very similar to the one originally posted by António Martins back in April 2009, but with the additions of the program name in blue letters in the bottom of the white circular logo, and the "FEE©" acronym in white letters in the lower hoist.
Photographs of this flag in use can also be seen here, here and here.
Randy Young, 04 February 2016

Ambassador Flag

[Eco Schools flag]
image by Randy Young, 04 February 2016

There is also a special flag for schools chosen to be Eco-Schools Ambassadors. According to the write-up:
"Our Ambassadors are leaders, who extend the ethos of Eco-Schools far beyond the school gates. Our Ambassadors have given support and guidance to other Eco-Schools and non Eco-Schools to encourage them to be sustainable and responsible schools."
Schools apply to be chosen as Ambassadors and then hold that honor for a two-year period. The Ambassador flag can be seen online here.
As with the other Eco-Schools flags, the core design features the Eco-Schools logo in a white circle on a green field. In this case, though, the white circle is shifted toward the bottom of the flag, making room for the word "Ambassador" in white letters above it. The first year of the school's ambassadorship is in white numbers in the bottom hoist, while the final year of the ambassadorship is in white numbers in the bottom fly. There is a thin white border that encompasses the entire flag.
Randy Young, 04 February 2016

National Variations

Here is a summary of the available sightings of the Eco-Schools flags in the different countries partners of the programme - the list of the national contact organisms is given at

  1. The most commonly used flag is green with the emblem of the programme in the middle and the "Fee©" writing in the lower left corner of the flag. Photographs of the flag are available for the following countries:
    2. Specific, national variants of the flag
    2a. Portugal (as "Eco-Escolas")
    Flag with "ECO - ESCOLA 2007 / 2008" (on two lines) in the upper left corneríciasEventos/tabid/2768/ctl/Read/mid/3879/NoticiaId/2032/Default.aspx

    Idem with "2006 / 2007"

    Idem with "2005 / 2006"

    Earlier flags, reported below, had the writing on the upper right corner "2002 / 2003"

    2b. Slovenia (as "Eko Šola")
    The flag, for vertical use, has a different emblem, based of course on the campaign's generic emblem:
    - There is a green ribbon, with a white left end and a blue right end, surrounding the logo, completed in base by the writing "EKO ŠOLA" (green) / "KOT NAČIN ŽIVLJENJA" ("As a way of life; in blue, smaller letters");
    - The word "SLOVENIJA" is added, in green letters in the left part of the white book, to be read from bottom to top.

    2c. South Africa
    Flag with "ECO - SCHOOL" in the upper part of the white disk (2007)

    2d. Sweden
    Flag with the logo of HSR (Hålle Sverige Rent / Keep Sweden Tidy)
    Foundation instead of the FEE monogram

    3. Other variants
    3a. Flag without the "Fee©" writing Finland

    The Netherlands

    South Africa

    3b. Flag with "Eco-Schools" in blue in the lower part of the disc

    "First Eco-School in north-western Romania" - the image seems quite old.


    The same flag with something added in the lower right corner

    4. Participating countries without flag sighting
    Brazil - Bulgaria - Chile - China - Cyprus - Dominican Republic - France - Germany - Greece - Japan - Jordan - Kazakhstan - Kenya - Latvia - Lithuania - Macedonia - Morocco - Puerto Rico - Russia - Slovakia - Tunisia - Uganda - USA

Ivan Sache, 6 April 2009

Local versions of the Eco Schools flag (Portugal)

[Eco School flag in Portugal] image by António Martins

In Escola Secundária Rainha Dona Leonor, a high school in Lisbon, the Eco School flag is displayed daily, in an equal-height pole to the left of the national flag, which is hoisted only on Sundays and holydays. In the upper fly there is some more lettering: "ECO-ESCOLAS 2002/2003". This obvious varies in language and dates, yielding some 15 different flags each year.
António Martins
, 24 December 2003

[Eco School flag in Portugal] image by Ivan Sache, 07 January 2013

"Correio do Minho", 15 December 2012, shows a photo of a flag granted in 2012 to a local school. The flag is somewhat different from the "prototype" reported in 2003: the FEE logo has been dropped and the writing is placed in upper left instead of upper right hoist, being "ECO-ESCOLA" (singular) instead of "ECO-ESCOLAS" (plural).
Ivan Sache, 07 January 2013

Probably to increase confusion, I somewhere have a 2012 photo of a Portuguese school and an example from Hamburg, where it is not presented as a flag but as a kind of "repostero", a carpet(?), which has no reverse. The German variant was white in 2011 and green in 2012.
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 09 January 2013

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