ESL Education

Sustainable Development

  • We are committed to sustainable development and ethical business practice. Every action within the company is thought of in terms of its global impact, which directly influences company policy.

    This commitment is more than environmental; the wellbeing of staff, suppliers, students and the communities to which we send students are increasingly important when we design and promote products.

    See our Sustainable Development Charter here

    Through awareness comes action and sustainable development is a work in progress. Our Sustainable Development Charter is just the first step in a long process that we will all eventually have to take.

    We are currently implementing an action plan which pushes the ideas of sustainable development further into the core of our business. This includes dealing with the global challenges that can be addressed at a policy level and ensuring that our students arrive at pro-active schools, dealing with the issues on a local level. Our first steps have been:

    • Appointing a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) manager.
    • Running awareness campaigns within the company to spread the message and principles of sustainable development.
    • Using 80% hydroelectric energy, as well as 10% solar energy (ESL head office).
    • Using train travel for business instead of air where possible (and always carbon offsetting for company travel).
    • Using FSC or PEFC certified paper for our brochures and reducing transport distances by using local suppliers for our international offices.
    • Reducing office waste through recycling, only printing emails when 100% necessary and recto-verso printing.
    • Using local and certified Fair Trade products in our offices.
    • Encouraging staff to travel to work by public transport or on foot/bike (or encouraging car sharing when this is the best option).

  • Carbon Offsetting

    We provide voluntary compensatory measures against CO2 emissions and allow for innovative solutions in climate protection.

    Find out more about our carbon offsetting.

  • Volunteering Overseas

    We always encourage students to integrate with the local community, whether through staying with a host family or getting involved in local projects. This helps create a stronger bond between the local population and their overseas visitors and helps our students with their language practice.

    Among our options are combined language travel/volunteer programmes, giving students real experience of community-based programmes overseas while improving their language skills. 

Among the trips offered are volunteer programs in Canada, Germany, Latin America or South Africa, where students combine language learning with local environmental and social projects.

    Our CSR Manager says:

    “Sustainable development wasn’t a hot topic when we started to look at it seriously, but once we started to explore it, we found that it is a highly complex one.”

    “Implementing the sustainable development action plan means looking at all aspects of the business, from suppliers up. It can throw up some unexpected challenges, particularly when considering transport and using resources carefully.”

    “There are three elements of sustainable development: environmental, economic and social. The social element is the one which often gets overlooked, but it is an important theme that you see in our sustainable development charter.”

    “We are constantly looking at how to improve our procurement, work with schools and practice in the offices. We see this as an ongoing process.”

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