<$f$>The latest talley shows Euharlee Elementary School, the winner of last school year’s elementary division, leading the pack with 45,960 pounds of recyclable materials. In all, the more than 20 participants — including Excel Christian Academy, schools from the Bartow County and Cartersville school systems, and the Bartow County Central Office — have collected 138.23 tons of items, including paper, cardboard, aluminum cans, and plastic and glass containers.
“I think it’s important that students have an awareness of keeping our county green and learning how to take care of the Earth, so that they will be able to grow up in a beautiful Bartow,” said Pat Boyter, a first-grade teacher at Euharlee Elementary, who coordinates the school’s recycling program. “I hear comments from students all the time about how they’re getting their parents to recycle at home.
“... I’ll get emails from parents about what all can be recycled at home. We put things on our website so the parents know exactly what can go in the bin outside [the school]. So we really try to communicate with the community what all can be recycled.”
According to the Keep Bartow Beautiful’s contest report, individual schools have collected the following amounts: Adairsville Elementary, 23,840 pounds; Allatoona Elementary, 6,380 pounds; Cartersville Primary, 9,740 pounds; Cartersville Elementary, 7,740 pounds; Clear Creek Elementary, 6,500 pounds; Cloverleaf Elementary, 11,700 pounds; Emerson Elementary, 2,260 pounds; Euharlee Elementary, 45,960 pounds; Hamilton Crossing Elementary, 5,480 pounds; Kingston Elementary, 4,540 pounds; Mission Road Elementary, 20,580 pounds; Pine Log Elementary, 3,340 pounds; Taylorsville Elementary, 2,120 pounds; White Elementary, 12,400 pounds; Adairsville Middle, 13,760 pounds; Adairsville High, 9,360 pounds; Cartersville Middle, 6,480 pounds; Cartersville High, 5,300 pounds; Cass Middle, 29,420 pounds; Cass High, 14,220 pounds; South Central Middle, 8,900 pounds; Woodland Middle, 12,540 pounds; Woodland High, 8,360 pounds; Bartow County College and Career Academy, no numbers recorded; and Excel Christian Academy, 4,240 pounds.
Since the contest’s inception in 2005, more than 1,138 tons of recyclable materials have been collected.
“What it basically has done for our community is that these teachers who voluntarily take on an extra workload and who incorporate other teachers, other staff members, other students [who] form a club or take on an existing clubto oversee this project, they teach the rest of their campus about recycling on a daily basis,” said Sheri Henshaw, executive director for Keep Bartow Beautiful. “They make it a habit and then that habit goes home with them and they in turn teach their parents who sometimes contribute as well to the school’s recycling. But then when summer comes, they want to continue.
“So then that builds recycling at home and that builds a lifelong habit. It’s made Bartow County one of the biggest recycling programs in the state of Georgia and Georgia is one of the top five states in the country. So we are very proud of what we’ve accomplished and I feel like this is the reason why we’re still there. When we had the downturn in 2007, a lot of people had to opt out of these programs and they just didn’t find them practical or feasible, but because of the schools and the education they’ve done throughout the community, we’ve not only been able to hold on to ours but we’ve been able to make it work really well for the entire community.”