Recycling means setting aside materials that can be recycled so they can be collected and then made into new products by manufacturers.
See below for the recycling assistance, supplies, and guides provided by the King County Green Schools Program for school and district participants. Also see Reducing food waste in schools.
Assistance, recycling bins, and signs
For each participant, the Green Schools Program assigns a program representative who helps students and staff assess current practices, and offers guidance on rethinking, reducing, reusing, and recycling. The representative assists each school or district team to make improvements, solve problems, and promote successes.
The program provides recycling stickers and indoor recycling bins. Use the guides listed below and see other recycling resources.
- Recycling stickersDownload PDF 300 K The program provides stickers that can be placed on indoor recycling bins or signs to post above recycling bins.
- Recycling containersDownload PDF 150 K The program provides indoor recycling bins, as needed, up to a maximum of $250 for schools serving 40% or more free and reduced lunch and schools in Auburn, Federal Way, Highline, Kent, and Renton school districts, and up to a maximum of $150 for other schools. King County buys the recycling bins directly from a vendor and has them delivered to participating schools.
- Recycling collection optionsDownload PDF 165 K Use this guide to help decide how your school will empty its indoor recycling bins and take the recyclable materials to the outdoor recycling container or dumpster.
- Milk carton recyclingDownload PDF 95 K Use this guide to plan and initiate milk carton recycling and leftover liquids collection at your school.
- How to secure container liner in container Download PDF 275 K
- Sign holder options for cafeteria recycling and waste stations Download PDF 600 K
- Frequently asked questions about school recyclingDownload PDF 150 K This Q & A document provides answers to common school recycling questions.
Educational, outreach, and grant and award resources
- Communication guideDownload PDF 162 K This document includes ideas about how to promote waste reduction, recycling, and other conservation practices in your school – and how to conduct regular or ongoing promotion.
- Educational programs. Sign up for King County Solid Waste Division’s free classroom workshops, elementary school assembly program, and other educational resources.
- Fact vs. Fiction about reducing waste and recycling Download PDF 550 K
- Fundraising ideas related to recycling Download PDF 150 K
- Grant and award opportunities listDownload PDF 150 K
- Incentives to encourage correct waste sorting Download PDF 200 K
- Recycling kick-off eventDownload PDF 265 K Use this guide to plan a successful kick-off event.
- Recycling quiz show questionsDownload PDF 57 K These "quiz show" questions can be used at a school assembly, in a school lunchroom, or in classrooms.
- Sample announcements and articles:
- Announce participation in the program and ask for volunteers Download Microsoft Word document 150 K
- Recycling Kick-off – sample announcements to promote a new recycling program Download Microsoft Word document 450 K
- Continuing to improve recycling Download Microsoft Word document 100 K – sample announcements to regularly promote recycling practices for established recycling programs.
- Sample principal emails: Ask your principal to send an email to all staff about:
- The school's program to reduce waste and to collect recyclable and compostable materialsDownload PDF 50 K
- The school's program to reduce waste and to collect recyclable materialsDownload PDF 50 K
- Sample end of year email Download PDF 40 K regarding recycling successes and recycling bins at end of school year.
- Staff meeting presentationsDownload PDF 241 K Use this guide to plan a short staff meeting presentation about waste reduction and recycling practices.
- Tours at regional recycling, composting, reuse, and garbage facilities Download PDF 130 K Take your students on a field trip tour of a recycling, reuse or composting facility.
- Waste Reduction and Recycling fast facts Download PDF 130 K. Use in PA announcements, in the lunchroom, at assemblies, in emails, in school and parent newsletters, on the school website, and in other publications to educate students, staff, and parents about reducing waste and recycling.
Monitoring recycling and garbage
Use these tools to track your school’s garbage, recycling, and food scrap volumes, and to calculate your school’s recycling rate.
- Recycling rate calculation worksheetDownload Microsoft Word document 500 K
- Garbage and recycling tracking formDownload PDF 143 K Use this form to monitor fullness of outdoor recycling and garbage Dumpsters.
- Food scrap assessment Download MS Word document , 35 K Before starting a composting collection program, your school can use this form to measure its food scrap volume and/or weight.
- Summer and school vacation garbage and recycling collection servicesDownload PDF 38 K To save money over the summer or during other school vacations, change your school’s garbage and recycling collection service to “on call” by giving this form to your principal, custodian, or school district office.
Recycling and composting options and resources
- Book reuse and recycling optionsDownload PDF 200 K
- Clear plastic bag vendorsDownload PDF 150 K
- Compost paper towels: If Cedar Grove Composting, Inc. picks up food scraps and other compostable materials from your school, consider collecting paper towels to be composted. Cedar Grove requires a separate labeled bin for paper towels, monitoring of items placed in paper towel bins, and an agreement signed by your school custodian who will monitor paper towel bins. Ask for more information from the King County Green Schools Program.
- Electronics recycling. Visit the Take It Back Network to find recycling options for computers, monitors, printers, TVs, cell phones, fax machines, and DVD and VCR players. E-Cycle Washington provides free electronics recycling for Washington public and private schools for computers, laptops, monitors, and TVs. For more information and to locate electronics recycling vendors, visit E-Cycle Washington external link or call 1-866-779-6632.
- Printer cartridge recycling vendorsDownload PDF 150 K
- Recycling old plastic garbage and recycling containersDownload PDF 150 K
- Shredded paper recycling options Download PDF 150 K Shredded paper is not accepted in commingled recycling bins. If your school or district has shredded paper, check out these recycling options.