Editorial: Reducing problems and renewing habits


Shae Daugherty

The school’s lack of recycling success is due to the lack of individual, collective and administrative attention and priority.

The school hasn’t been successful in its recycling efforts this year due to a lack of communication between student-led organizations, administration and the custodians. The problem extends to the student body when non-recyclables such as food items are disposed of in the recycling bins.

There is no one person or group responsible for the lack of recycling at our school. But the process can’t be improved unless everyone does their part.

It begins in the classroom. In order to recycle as much as we can as a school and community, students and teachers must be more aware about what they recycle. If something that can be recycled is thrown in the trash, it obviously misses out on the potential to recycle. The same can be said for when non-recyclable trash is thrown in a recycling bin, leading to the entire bin going to waste. Informative posters placed near the blue bins can help educate students and faculty on how to recycle properly. This minimal effort is the most important step to improving our recycling program.

Next, somebody needs to claim responsibility for collecting recyclables from the classrooms. Due to miscommunication among PALS, Student Council, the life skills classes, administrators, and the custodial staff, nobody was in charge of the recycling process at school this year. The life skills classes are willing to take up the role they previously played in school-wide recycling. NHS members can also join in the process as well by using service hours to encourage student participation.   

Finally, the school’s recycling dumpster is too small, cutting the campus recycling potential in half as it is often filled within a few days, according to the custodians. Any additional recyclables are tossed into trash once the dumpster is filled. The school should set aside some money to purchase another recycling dumpster. If budget money is insufficient, a fundraiser or a community donation could satisfy the need.

Current recycling does not reflect our school’s potential. Many students and staff would like to see a change in this area. With the summer ahead, we have the opportunity to plan the steps needed for an effective recycling program. Don’t worry about changing the whole world. Focus on the impact you can make in your classroom.