The Green Committee was restated in 2016 to help provide education and information on envirommental issues and to integrate “green” principles into school-sponsored events and classroom curriculum. WES Green Committee's goal is to inspire students to want to take care of their planet!
Summary of programs sponsored by WES Green:
Stewardship of WES Grounds
Fall / Spring Newsletter
Lunch Waste Reduction
Outdoor Classroom Nature Trail
Earth Day / Activity Month
Lunch Waste Reduction
In the fall of 2015 the Green Committee introduced a ‘Recycling Rangers’ program where students are chosen during lunch to assist and help out with what can and cannot be recycled during their lunch periods. This new program has been a big success. In the first few weeks of the fall a couple of volunteers remind the children of the program and what items can be recycled. The Recycling Rangers wear a green lanyard that lists the items below. Lunch aides also assist students with this process.
Items that can be recycled from the cafeteria (only when empty):
- Plastic milk and water bottles
- Plastic fruit and vegetable cups
- Plastic yogurt containers
- Plastic cereal bowl
- Plastic sauce and ketchup containers
- Paper bags
Items that cannot be recycled:
- Plastic utensils
- Bottle caps
- Styrofoam trays and salad cups
- Paper or foil juice boxes
The WES Green Committee educates students on proper lunch time recycling habits. Each April, the committee visits the lunches of each grade and explains the recycling rules that apply to recycling at school.The Radnor School District contracts with a different recycling company than that which picks up our recycling from home. Therefore, the recycling rules can be different at home and at school! But there is no need to worry. Your child will be an expert on recycling both at home and school, and may even teach you something you don’t know!
A "trash-less” lunch is a lunch that produces no refuse that isn’t 100% biodegradable—no plastic or metal. Here are some ideas for packing a “trash-less” lunch:
- Send beverages in a thermos or reusable bottle, not juice boxes or bottled water. Plastic water bottles can be put in a bin in the lunchroom to be recycled, however using and cleaning a reusable bottle is inherently less energy intensive. Stainless steel bottles are becoming very popular, as they are durable and do not pose the “chemical leaching” problem that some plastics do. Whatever reusable bottle your child may use, it should be thoroughly washed and dried between uses to avoid building bacteria.
- Send food in reusable plastic containers, not plastic baggies. Avoid buying snacks that are pre-packaged as “single serving”; rather, buy larger containers of food (yogurt, raisins, crackers, etc.) and place the appropriate serving size into a reusable container. If you are considering buying a new lunch box, many websites offer “bento box” lunch kits that include reusable containers that fit conveniently inside, as well as a variety of aluminum food containers.
- Send reusable utensils instead of using disposable ones. These should be brought home daily for cleaning.
- Whole fruits and veggies are great items to include. Many come in their own natural packages (apples, oranges, bananas) and the trash they produce is 100% biodegradable. Grapes, carrots, and celery sticks are perfect for containers, and require no utensils to eat.
- Make sure to clearly label each container with your child’s name and teacher’s name. This way, misplaced items can be easily returned to their owner.
- If children are buying lunch, they may bring in their own plate and utensils. However, these must be brought home each day and cleaned. The school has had problems with dishes from home being left in the cafeteria.
WES Green has been working with the school lunch program to find ways to reduce waste. WES Green hopes to assist the school in converting to the use of reusable lunch trays from the present disposable Styrofoam lunch trays.
The Audubon “bird garden,” surrounding the 2nd grade classrooms and cafeteria, was conceived and funded through a partnership between the WES PTO and the Radnor Conservancy. The garden provides an outdoor landscape for all students to learn about and appreciate native bird and plant species.
Several improvements and additions to the gardens at WES have been made over the last few years. Many plants were purchased with funds given to WES Green by the Radnor Conservancy. Mr. Demitis’ landscaping company, Aberdeen Lawn & Garden, Inc., was successful in making all this possible.
WES Nature Trail
In the woods to the right of the bus loop is the WES “outdoor classroom” and nature trail. The outdoor classroom provides a space for teachers to bring students for lessons on the natural world. The “trailhead” can be found near the basketball court. Students and their families are encouraged to take a nature walk after school! WES Green thanks Boy Scout Troop 507 for their help in maintaining and improving the nature trail.
Gardens outside the kindergarten and 2nd grade class rooms will continue to be maintained by teachers and students throughout the year.