Is Franklin High School Eco-Friendly?

Olivia Curreri, Writer

Franklin High School has recently been trying to fix excess paper usage and food waste.

Many schools across the country have been faced with the problem of recycling. Beth Carter, a Janitor at FHS says that recycle bins are only emptied three times a week while trash is emptied everyday. According to Edutopia, the average school uses approximately 250,000 pieces of paper per school year. Yet only 30% of the 75% recyclable American waste stream reaches the blue bins around every corner, according to the EPA.

Franklin High School has done some work to try to limit the use of paper in its classrooms. With the switch to Google Classroom and every student using Chromebooks, a significant change has been seen in paper waste. Yet janitors say that even with these switches, the school still uses too much. And 62% of the student body agrees with them.

Along with recycling, food waste in our school is a problem too. Rashiba Lemanski, a cafeteria employee at FHS, says that she sees students and staff constantly waste food. She believes that this is because during lunch some of the healthier required food they don’t eat because they don’t like them.  

Our school isn’t the only one facing these problems. A study conducted by researchers from the University of Vermont found that while children placed more fruits and vegetables on their trays – as required by the USDA mandates put in place in 2012 – they consumed fewer of them. The amount of food wasted increased by 56%.

In an effort to help stop food waste, the school has put policies in place to give employees food that would have been thrown away. Lemanski says that FHS is doing a good job to stop food waste by making use of leftovers and creating regulations like these. She also reports that there had been talk of using compost bins yet the idea wasn’t passed, but it could be a possibility in the future.

Despite having some struggles in finding successful ways to eliminate food and paper waste, Franklin High School has some great policies to help the environment. Sixty-seven percent of the student body believes that the school and students need to work together to save the Earth.