At School


For guidance and assistance with school recycling and waste reduction efforts, see the Recycling Guide for Nevada Schools (pdf) or contact us.

Set up a recycling program at school

Whether starting from scratch or making improvements to an existing program, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Have a dedicated team (e.g. green club) and the support of school administrators.
  • Conduct a waste audit to better understand what is being thrown out. 
  • Determine what materials will be collected, and whether they can be co-mingled or must be kept separate. 
  • Always place recycling bins next to trash cans. 
  • Clearly label recycling containers, and if possible, purchase bins with lids shaped to accommodate recyclables.
  • Have a clear plan for how bins will be emptied regularly. 
  • Educate students, staff, and faculty regularly. 
  • Keep it as simple and straightforward as possible!
Recycling other items:

Not all recyclable materials are collected by your local waste hauler. Nonetheless, additional materials can be recycled. Check out programs like Terracycle to reduce your school's waste stream even more!



  • With administrative approval, put "These Come From Trees" stickers on paper towel dispensers, printers, and copiers. K-12 school are eligible to order them for free here.
  • Make double-sided copies the default on printers and copiers.
  • Share subscriptions to periodicals.
  • Set up classroom vermicomposting bins.
  • Switch to reusable materials in the cafeteria (e.g. utensils). 
  • Buy institutional sizes of cleaning supplies, food, beverages, and other supplies. These can then be packaged into smaller, reusable dispensers.
  • Implement an "offer" versus "serve" program in the cafeteria.


  • Use reusable envelopes for interoffice mail.
  • Refill toner cartridges.
  • Use scrap paper for notes. Notepads can be made with a wax binder; notebooks can be made with other binding machines.
  • Encourage students who bring their lunch to pack it in reusable materials.
  • On a locker clean-out day, have a donation table for usable items that students would otherwise discard.