A school is a place where we send our children to learn as much as possible about the world around them. These establishments should make sure students learn how to treat the planet that we call home. Students must learn the most efficient ways to conserve our planet, and this includes how we view the creation and removal of garbage. Here are a few ways to reduce waste in schools.
In the Classroom
Paper is one of the biggest contributors to waste in any classroom. Instead of throwing paper away, try setting up boxes for paper scraps that are still usable. For classroom projects, encourage the use of recycled materials and give students the option of submitting their assignments virtually instead of on paper.
In the Cafeteria
The best way to reduce the trash in the lunchroom is to expand the use of reusable materials such as plastic trays and metal flatware. Rather than use disposable plates, put the food directly onto the trays. You can also perform a food audit to determine what meals students enjoy and what gets thrown away the most. This will increase the number of students who eat a healthy meal while also reducing trash. You can also encourage students who pack their lunch to try to make it as waste-free as possible. Installing indoor recycling containers greatly diminishes the amount of plastic and glass that end up in the garbage.
Around the Building
Administrators can also help with the reduction of waste. One of the best ways to reduce waste in schools is to encourage smarter printer practices. This includes printing in color only when necessary, using both sides of the page, and doubling up on shorter pages and cutting them in half. Administrators can also purchase sponges, rags, and erasers for cleaning instead of paper towels. And they can send out notices for students and staff through email instead of sending memos and notes throughout the building.