Waste reduction at your school

Introducing a waste reduction programme in your school is really quite straightforward - you may well be doing a lot of this activity already. The key is to formalise your procedure so that everybody knows what you are doing and why you are doing it. This will not only encourage people to get involved but it will also put you well on the road to accreditation.

The first step is often a simple review of current environmental practices. This will enable you to highlight areas of strength and indeed weakness and to subsequently plan areas for action. Are there any gaps in your recycling? What happens to all of your kitchen waste? Are your learning materials used as fully as they might be?

From here many schools find developing an action group is the best way to move your programme forward, formalise activity and involve both the whole school and the wider community. By meeting regularly to plan and review waste reduction activity, you can help to ensure that your programme retains momentum and continues to grow as your school's green policy develops.

Quick wins

  • Make sure everything is double-sided - printing, photocopying and even hand-written notes.
  • Implement a school 'packaging diet'. Make sure any purchases use as little packaging as possible and also try to encourage pupils who have a packed lunch to do the same.
  • Buy recycled wherever you can and ask your suppliers about take-back scheme for packaging.
If you have a question about resources or recycling in Cumbria call our helpline on  0300 003 1118
or email us at  info@recycleforcumbria.org