Juanita Elementary recognized by county green school program

Juanita Elementary achieved a recycling rate of 55 percent.

Juanita Elementary School. Photo courtesy of Lake Washington School District

Juanita Elementary School. Photo courtesy of Lake Washington School District

Juanita Elementary School (JES) was recently recognized by the King County Green Schools program for its efforts in reducing its waste and increasing recycling practices.

The program has served a growing number of schools each year — from 70 schools in 2008 to 305 schools in March — that’s 61 percent of the K-12 schools in 36 King County cities and unincorporated areas outside Seattle. More than 155,000 students in those 305 schools have had opportunities to learn about conservation and engage in conservation practices through the program.

JES was one of four schools recognized in March.

“We are honored to recognize four schools this month for their contributions toward our goal of a 70 percent recycling rate as they guide their students and employees in conserving valuable natural resources,” Pat D. McLaughlin, director of the King County Solid Waste Division, said in a release.

According to Lake Washington School District director of communication Shannon Parthemer, JES achieved a recycling rate of 55 percent.

“At the beginning of the 2018-19 school year, Juanita Elementary held an all-school Going Green Together assembly provided by King County,” she said.

Throughout the year, the student body made several efforts to reduce the school’s waste and increase recycling. Some of the efforts included:

  • Placing stickers provided by the King County Green Schools Program on recycling bins throughout the school listing what can and can’t be recycled.
  • Third grade students leading an initiative to collect food scraps in classrooms by presenting to other grade levels and organizing a daily collection.
  • Placing five-gallon compost collection buckets in each classroom to collect food scraps.
  • Teachers and lunch room staff members conducting demonstrations during and lunch explaining how to sort waste properly.
  • The school using reusable durable trays in its lunchroom.

Due to these efforts, JES is now a Level One Green School.

For more information about the Green Schools Program, visit the King County website, under the solid waste division.

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