Schools finding it cleaner to be greener

It’s not Christmas yet, but many local schools are adding green to their school colors.

Working with the Alabaster Beautification Board, several local schools have recently launched a Going Green initiative.

Thompson High sophomores Rachel McMullen, Rebekah Pilgreen and Shannon Turek have spearheaded the Going Green movement in several local schools.

The project launched first at Thompson High School, and it was introduced Friday at Thompson Middle School. Creek View Elementary, Meadow View Elementary and Thompson Intermediate are also set to jump on-board.

The project has started with each school receiving a big green dumpster to dump recycled goods in. Since the project has started with paper, each dumpster is only filled with paper.

Since school started, the high school has dumped eight dumpsters full of paper, weighing in at 1.28 tons.

A large part of the project is having bins in each room for students and teachers to use, which are then picked up by and dumped in the green dumpsters.

However, the bins cost $5.50 apiece and the schools need nearly 100 each.

During Thompson Middle’s pre-kickoff meeting with Luci Tucker’s seventh-grade gifted class, Beautification Board President Larry Stewart, Secretary Sandy Lauppe and member Col. Eldon Woodie spoke about what the kids could do to raise money and awareness for the Going Green cause.

Woodie said the high school filled four dumpsters before each classroom received their bins, which he said the middle school could also do before the bins arrive.

“Does that mean you can’t recycle now without the bins? No,” Woodie said.

The middle school students plan to begin the event Monday, so they discussed how to attack the project on Friday.

Among the things that were discussed were how to raise funds, how to educate the student body, how to implement the plan and other ideas.

Members of the high school Green Club were also on hand to share ideas.

Sophomores Rebekah Pilgreen, Shannon Turek and Rachel McMullen told the students how they should make flyers and ask businesses and the Parent Teacher Organization for donations.

Other tips were to seek partnerships with other classes, groups and clubs. The middle school students also plan to use the library checkout as an opportunity to educate schoolmates.

Woodie also pointed out that these kids have already taken a big step by accepted this project and mission. Now it is the time for everyone to support them and start recycling.

“The kids involved with this are already responsible kids,” Woodie said. “We don’t want these kids to do it all. We want the whole community involved.”

As the project grows through the schools and over time, Woodie said the plan is to move on to recycling plastic and glass, although paper is the main focus now.

“You would be surprised how much paper we waste each day,” Woodie said.