New recycling education program launched in OC classrooms


COSTA MESA, Calif .– As part of a multi-faceted outreach program to educate students, residents and organizations on best recycling practices, OC Waste & Recycling (OCWR), in partnership with Environmental Education Inside the Outdoors from the Orange County Department of Education (OECD) program, is launching a new curriculum initiative to engage local learners in sustainable behaviors.

Under the umbrella, the program will provide local educators with educational materials that support classroom instruction, student engagement, and family activities related to Orange County’s waste diversion efforts. Nearly 20 local schools have participated in a pilot program to sample and provide feedback on the new curriculum, and dozens more are expected to implement the program in the coming school year 2021-22.

“The County is proud to provide educators with valuable tools to engage students in waste diversion while meeting state-mandated educational requirements,” said Supervisor Andrew Do, Chairman of the County Supervisory Board of Orange. “Together, we inspire students to take an active role in preserving our local resources for a safe and healthy community for future generations.”

Aimed at strengthening environmental culture, the program aims to help local communities meet the organic waste diversion goals set out in Senate Bill 1383. Approved by the governor in 2016, the law changed the way California handles organic waste and required a 75 percent reduction in organic waste disposal statewide by Jan. 1, 2025 on the base of 2014 levels.

“While waste diversion goals can be achieved through activities such as edible food recovery, composting and organic waste recycling, the partnership between the OCWR and the OECD aims to educate younger consumers. county, creating lasting impact for the future and increasing engagement in these practices. Said Lori Kiesser, Education and Partnerships Coordinator for Inside the Outdoors.

The program also enables the OECD to better support local districts in implementing academic frameworks in science and history, including California Environmental Principles and Concepts, or EP&C. EP&C, which highlight the relationship between human and natural systems, should be taught in the classroom and should focus on local environmental priorities.

“Partnering with the OECD’s Inside the Outdoors program is essential for the county’s next generation of education and waste diversion programs in response to state standards and more recent economic impacts within the county. recycling industry, ”said Tom Koutroulis, Director, OC Waste & Recycling. “The OCWR and the OECD are uniquely positioned to provide teachers, students and families with resources that support academic settings to ensure accessibility for all communities in Orange County. “

For more information on Eco Challenge and how local educators can implement the program in their classrooms, please contact Inside the Outdoors at inside[email protected].

About OC Waste & Recycling

The OCWR meets the solid waste disposal needs of the county by providing waste management services through a municipal landfill system and resource recovery facilities, protecting the local environment, investing in local businesses, renewable energy and encouraging recycling to ensure a safe and healthy community for current and future generations. . The department operates one of the country’s premier solid waste disposal systems, serving residents and businesses in the county’s 34 towns and unincorporated areas. The OCWR’s three active discharges best reflect environmental engineering. Learn more by visiting or follow @ocwaste on social media.

About the inside outside

The OECD’s Inside the Outdoors has been a leader in hands-on science and social science programs since 1974. The program’s mission is to empower students, teachers, parents and the community to explore natural areas and broaden their knowledge, understanding and management of the environment. To learn more about Inside the Outdoors, visit OTI website.

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