Richard L. Sanders Exceptional School Recycles Most Paper in Pinellas County

PINELLAS PARK – The Florida Department of Environmental Protection celebrated Richard L. Sanders Exceptional School students and teachers today for recycling 2,843 pounds of paper during March as part of a countywide Earth Day contest.

Students from Richard L. Sanders recycled, on average, 20.3 pounds per student during March, the most among Pinellas County Schools. Seminole Vocational Education Center and Anona Elementary rounded out the top three, each recycling 2,280 pounds of paper total.

The Department’s Southwest District office, in partnership with Pinellas County Schools, held a recycling competition throughout March leading up to Earth Day, April 22. The Department honored students and staff during assemblies at the top three schools where they were awarded Florida State Parks passes. Approximately 1,200 students were honored with free passes for participating.

“We are proud of our students and the commitment they show to sustaining the environment,” said Jacquelene Douglas, principal of Richard L. Sanders School. “Their collective effort shows the impact we have when we work together for a common good.”

Since January, Pinellas County Schools have collected more than 433,200 pounds of paper. In 2012, Pinellas County Schools together recycled over 2 million pounds of paper. Pinellas County Schools also won the 2011 Florida Green School Award for their proactive recycling efforts.

“We commend Richard L. Sanders Exception School for educating our children about the value of environmental stewardship,” said Mary Yeargan, DEP Southwest District Director. “Recycling is an easy way to protect and preserve Florida’s natural resources for future generations.”

In 2008, the Florida Legislature enacted Florida Statute 403.7032, which established a new statewide recycling goal of 75 percent to be achieved by 2020. Recycling rates have been climbing slowly since 2006. These positive trends are the result of increased awareness by the public and businesses about the benefits of recycling. Recycling materials cuts down on landfill waste, sparks economic activity and reuses products that otherwise would become trash.

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