Our students were recently featured in the Dakota County school e-news in recognition of our school waste reduction initiatives. Please read the article below, highlighting these efforts by SES students and staff! If you are a Dakota County Resident and would like to receive news like this directly from the county a sign-up on their website is available for all. (This particular article was featured under the content area of Environmental News for Schools.)
Schools in the Spotlight: School of Environmental Studies
The School of Environmental Studies (SES) in Apple Valley participated in Dakota County’s Minnesota GreenCorps project to try out wasted food prevention strategies. The SES project had numerous successes including:
▪ Reduced the average daily amount of food waste per student, saving an estimated 938 pounds of food each school year.
▪ Cut wasted milk by 41 percent, equivalent to saving 40,333 gallons of water every year.
▪ Created a new Share Table for students to place unopened food and beverage items.
▪ Added a Flavor Station, so students can customize their meal.
▪ Increased education on the environmental impacts of wasted food and reimbursable meal requirements (e.g., not required to take milk) through presentations, table tents, posters and pledges.
Following the project, SES received a Fuel Up to Play 60 grant and installed a bulk milk dispenser. Reusable cups have replaced milk cartons, resulting in an elimination of 6,160 milk cartons since the start of the school year and a reduction of 81 percent of milk waste from pre-project numbers.
This project was successful because of support from MN GreenCorps member, Hannah Keller; Principal Lauren Trainer; Coordinator of Food and Nutrition Services, Spencer Fischer; Food Service Manager, Lisa Germond; and AVID Teacher, Kim Colburn-Lindell. Thank you, SES, for being a waste reduction trailblazer.