Environmental stewardship is a value our kids embrace every day. Through sustainability initiatives such as our composting program and battery recycling initiative our kids, parents, teachers and staff are all helping to reduce waste in our environment. With the goal of ‘ Zero Waste Scarsdale,’ we will continue to make strides with increased programs which foster healthy living by reducing waste and toxins in our world. We hope to launch two new initiatives this coming school year: No idling and Campaign to encourage reusuable bottles, containers, and utensils.Green/Sustainability Committee
Environmental stewardship is a value our kids embrace every day. Through sustainability initiatives such as our composting program and battery recycling initiative our kids, parents, teachers and staff are all helping and teaching one another how to reduce waste in our environment. With the goal of ‘ Zero Waste Scarsdale’, we will continue to make strides with increased programs which foster healthy living by reducing waste and toxins in our world.Heathcote is proud to be helping to make a greener and healthier earth. Details about our current program are listed below as well as initiatives in the works.
Battery recyclingCurrently Westchester County does not have a battery recycling program available to residents. As a result residents have to put their batteries in the trash, which gets burned at our County incinerator. Thus, we are breathing in the toxins that are released from the batteries we put in the trash. There is a better way though and we’re now doing it at Heathcote!There is now a battery collection pod at the entrance to the Main Office. Staff, students and their families are encouraged to save their used up batteries and deposit them in the pod. All Battery types are accepted, including Lithium-ion. From there the batteries will be recycled and once again be put to good use!Thanks in advance for recycling your batteries and helping to protect our health and our earth!
No-IdlingHeathcote will be installing signs in the parking lot and traffic circle to instruct drivers to shut off their engines. Exhaust from idling vehicles can cause lung damage and respiratory problems. Exhaust also exacerbates asthma and existing allergies, and long-term exposure is thought to increase the risk of lung cancer.
Children are especially vulnerable to idling because:
- Children's lungs continue to develop as they grow, and they are most susceptible to harmful toxins released from vehicles during their school years
- Chidren breathe, on average, 50% more air per pound weight than adults
- Children are closer to the ground, and therefore, closer to tailpipes
- The World Health Orgnization found that particle pollution and ground-level ozone aggravated asthma in children and contributed to an increased rate of respiratory tract infection
Idling vehicles also waste fuel and emissions contribute to global warming. Some may think that turning your engine off and on uses more gas than idling however:
- Idling for 30 seconds uses more fuel than restarting your engine, and idling for 10 minutes a day wastes an average of 24.6 gallons of gas per year
- Reducing or avoiding idling optimizes car performance as well as extends vehicle life
Idling is bad for the environment, bad for your budget and bad for our health. In addition, it is also against the law to idle for more than 3 minutes if the temperature is 40 degrees or warmer.
Lunchroom Food Scraps and Recycling
Food scraps are not trash! Each day during lunch, kids put all of their food scraps into green “compost” bins that are lined with compostable bags instead of the regular trash bins. These bags of food scraps are then picked up and taken to a composting facility offsite and turned into useful compost!
In addition to recycling our food scraps, forks used during lunch are now compostable. These compostable items are made from renewable resources such as sugarcane leaves, corn and wheatstraw. No more plastic! As with the food scraps, these compostable items will all be turned into compost. These items use renewable resources, are healthier for the kids to eat off of and reduce our waste.
Exciting initiatives to come!
Reusable Water Bottles, Containers & UtensilsWe will increase communications to parents to encourage them to send children to school each day with a reuseable water bottle as well as with reuseable food containers and utensils.
One of our PTA sustainability goals is to reduce the amount of single-use items used in school such as plastic water bottles and ziploc bags. To help us reach our goal please consider sending your children to school with a reusable water bottle each day and using reusable containers and utensils for snack and lunch. Water bottle filling stations are available in the school so filtered water is available for the kids.
With the launch of the lunchroom composting program, we are striving to create almost no trash during lunch anymore! The few items left are typically ziploc bags and chip bags. We hope to reduce the trash to almost nothing as more kids use reusable containers.
Support the Village of Scarsdale Food Scrap Recycling Program
Complimenting the food scrap recycling program in the schools, the Village of Scarsdale has launched a residential food scrap recycling program. Scarsdale residents are encouraged participate. To make it easy to get started, the Village has food scrap recycling “starter kits” available. Food Scraps are picked up at residents home weekly.
Just like at the Scarsdale schools, the collected food scraps will be sent to a composting facility outside of Scarsdale and turned into useful compost. Also like the schools, all forms of food scraps are accepted including meat, bones, dairy, bread, rice, pasta, cooked food, oils and even paper towels and napkins! Since your kids are doing it in the schools they can teach you what to do!
For more information, visit http://scarsdale.com/495/Food-Scrap-Recycling or email email@example.com
Questions? Want to get involved? Please contact us!
Heathcote PTA Green Team:
Aggy ShawnAngie Keh
Heathcote Teacher Green Team: