Students Celebrate Earth Day

Students reduce waste, plant trees, promote sustainability and more

Article Date: Apr 22, 2022

In observance of Earth Day on April 22, students in Bend-La Pine Schools are celebrating the day with some creative and meaningful activities to promote sustainability and bring awareness to caring for the planet.

“Sustainability has long been important to Bend-La Pine Schools and it’s great to see students from elementary to high school, recognizing Earth Day by taking the initiative to advocate for sustainability and taking care of our natural environment,” said Superintendent Steven Cook.

Many of the efforts related to Earth Day and sustainability were initiated by students, including one effort underway at Bend Senior High School. (See below for a longer list of activities taking place around the district.) The school’s Environmental Club is celebrating the roll out of a new food waste reduction program.

Junior Olive Nye says, “This project is important because it involves students, prompts them to think about their habits, has an impact on our community and world, and can inspire other students to take action. The system will be completely student-run and it’s an opportunity for students to lead and work together.”

The team worked with staff members to implement the system, which is debuting next week. Students will now deposit food waste into a separate container so that it can be composted, rather than ending up in the trash.

Nye explained that the project required a lot of planning, coordination and communication between students and staff and received support from the Environmental Center, Principal Christopher Reese and head custodian Jason McGuire.

Additional highlights from around our schools include:

Waste Reduction:
  • High Lakes Elementary is switching from plastic to reusable silverware and working on creating less waste during meal times by “stacking boats” that their food comes in.
  • Pilot Butte Middle school recently reduced its garbage pick-ups from five to three times a week, reducing cost by $6,000 annually.
  • Students at Juniper Elementary, R.E. Jewell Elementary, North Star Elementary, William E. Miller Elementary, Lava Ridge Elementary and Caldera High School are working to reduce plastic waste in their schools. For inspiration, they recently watched Microplastic Madness, a film about kids taking on plastic pollution and providing insight into the global plastic pollution crisis.

Pollution, Nature and Clean Up Efforts:

  • Students at Pacific Crest Middle School will plant trees on school grounds on April 27, in an effort to offset their carbon footprint.
  • Westside Village Magnet at Kingston School has started an anti-idling campaign, an effort focused on bringing awareness to the amount of pollution caused by idling vehicles.
  • Summit High students will spend Earth Day clearing weeds in front of the school to make room for native plants and flowers.
  • Mountain View High students will clean up campus after school today.

Earth Day Education:

  • Caldera High School is showcasing the Telluride Mountain Film for students in the Media Center. Students have also created displays and learning activities on display in the Media Center.