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The Zero Waste Schools Initiative began with an auditing process during the 2016–2017 school year. Students found that on average 40% of the waste in the cafeteria was made up of materials that could have been composted or recycled. We had been putting approximately 6 tons of organic matter into the waste stream during a school year and throwing away 3 tons of items that could have been recycled.

With help from Wilton Go Green, Wilton Public Schools has begun a journey to reduce the amount of waste produced in its schools. The Zero Waste Schools Committee has developed individualized plans for each school to ultimately increase recycling, compost organic materials and donate any uneaten food from our students to those in need. Our Zero Waste Schools Initiative is working to educate families, staff and community members to change the way they look at waste through educational programs and events throughout the school year.

In the fall of 2018, the Zero Waste Schools Coalition was formed to create a platform for schools in Connecticut and beyond to connect, learn and share ways to introduce or enhance programming to reduce waste in our schools. The Coalition is free to join and open to any stakeholder (i.e., administrators, teachers, custodians, food service employees, parents, community members and students) interested in reducing waste in their schools (pre-K through college). Join the Zero Waste Schools Coalition by registering here.

Follow this link to learn more about the Zero Waste Schools Initiative and the Zero Waste Schools Coalition.

Watch the Wilton Public Schools Case Study video by Center for EcoTechnology.  

Congratulations to Middlebrook School for being selected as a 2020 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School!