Six New York state schools, including French Road Elementary School of Rochester, were recipients of a Green Schools Grant from the New York State Association for Reduction, Reuse and Recycling, NYSAR3, the professional recyclers’ association for New York State.
The $228 award to French Road Elementary School will be used to fund the physical supplies needed to implement a “Backyard Vermicomposting” workshop. Organics collected from the cafeteria will be hauled to local farms and vermicomposted, and the workshop will give students a background on the basics and hands-on experience with worm composting. It will be tied in with existing science curriculum and include a component to encourage students to begin composting efforts at home. The supplies will be reused for continued education in the coming years. Impact Earth, a partner in BCSD’s environmental goals, has also pledged to provide staffing at the workshops and maintain the worm bins in the future.
The project will help the school meet the zero waste policy established in 2017 by the Brighton Central School Board, with a goal of reaching an 80% landfill diversion rate by 2022.
“We had a nice mix of interesting applications submitted from schools across New York state this round, with a total of $2,726 going to the six winners,” said Theresa Evans, chair of the NYSAR3 Green Schools grant program. “We had 26 applications this year. It was a record number of submissions, but made the selection process very difficult.”
NYSAR3 established a grant program for public and private schools grades K-12 in 2005 for the purpose of providing up to $500 for seed, or start-up money for recycling/waste reduction/composting programs in public and private schools. Since that time, over 100 NYS schools have benefitted financially from the program, to say nothing of the environmental benefits achieved by instituting recycling/waste reduction programs in schools.