Zoller ES receives "Green Schools Grant"
Posted on 05/15/2019
Congratulations to Zoller Elementary School

On May 15, 2019, NYSAR issued the following press release:

Zoller Elementary School
Receives Vermicomposting Grant 

Six New York State schools, including Jesse T. Zoller Elementary School of Schenectady, were recipients of a “Green Schools Grant” from the New York State Association for Reduction, Reuse and Recycling (NYSAR3), the professional recyclers’ association for New York State.

he $500 award to Jesse T. Zoller Elementary School (Zoller) will be used to purchase a half dozen compost and vermicompost (worm compost) bins, as well as supplemental educational materials.  Over the past several years, the school has been implementing environmental sustainability practices including gardening vegetables, fruits, herbs, and plants, recycling paper and redeemable bottle and cans, and composting some of their yard’s grass and leaves, but wants do more.  With these funds, Zoller will be able to divert more of their school ground trimmings and meal program’s food scraps to compost. 

As the school aims to “close the loop” in the coming years, their goals are to develop school-wide composting and recycling systems, sell the generated worm castings as an annual fundraiser to further expand their programs, and use the remaining compost in their gardens to grow food for students and staff.  Backed by the school’s administration, a number of staff and the PTO, along with support from local organizations ensures the continued success of Zoller’s programs. 

Other schools receiving awards include French Road Elementary School in Rochester; Finger Lakes Technical and Career Center in Stanley; Lake Placid Central School District, Lake Placid; Hermon DeKalb Central School in De Kalb Junction and McGraw Junior/Senior High School in McGraw.

“We had a nice mix of interesting applications submitted from schools across New York state this round, with a total of $2,726 going to the six winners,” said Theresa Evans, chair of the NYSAR3 Green Schools grant program. “We had 26 applications this year. It was a record number of submissions, but made the selection process very difficult.” 

NYSAR3 established a grant program for public and private schools Grades K-12 in 2005 for the purpose of providing up to $500 for seed, or start-up money for recycling/waste reduction/composting programs in public and private schools. Since that time, over 100 NYS schools have benefitted financially from the program, to say nothing of the environmental benefits achieved by instituting recycling/waste reduction programs in schools.

 NYSAR3, the premiere recycling organization in New York State, provides members with expertise and education on waste reduction, reuse and recycling issues and practices to improve the environment. The group advocates for policies and programs that support environmental sustainability in the Empire State and provides access to a network of individuals and organizations that share ideas about starting and improving reduction, reuse, and recycling programs, as well as information on education and funding. More details are available on their website: www.NYSAR3.org.

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