As America Recycles Day approaches, here is a highlight of green initiatives that have been implemented within our district.

Recycling is still an important initiative at IPS. Over the past year, Indianapolis Public Schools has made several positive strides concerning the “green movement.” Recycling bins from our partners at Waste Management are available at every IPS school and facility, but our efforts to conserve energy and preserve our environment certainly don’t end there. At Cold Springs School, Environmental Sciences teacher, David Petty, has implemented a more hands-on approach to teaching his students about composting.

“The act of composting is not only beneficial to the plants, but it’s beneficial to our students who are learning how animals and plants interact to develop a better ecosystem,” says Petty.

The students in Mr. Petty’s class use Red worm composting to grow fresh vegetables such as broccoli, lettuce, cucumbers and cilantro.

“Red worm composting is using the worms to recycle food scraps and other organic material into a valuable soil amendment. Worms eat food scraps, which become compost as they pass through the worm’s body. Compost then exits the worm through its tail end. This compost can then be used to grow plants,” says Petty.

On the other hand, Kristi Hardin, Budget and Efficiency Coordinator for IPS, has been “instrumental” in helping students become more aware of the importance of recycling. Hardin has invited a group called, The Dumpster Drummers to perform for students at Jonathan Jennings School 109 and Elder Diggs School 42 on Nov. 24. Hardin says, The Dumpster Drummers use all recyclable items as their instruments to make music.

“They use large plastic recycling bins, cans, as well as PVC pipes to make music, the kids just love them,” says Hardin, “They engage the kids in the performance by calling them up to the stage and giving them an item and the audience has to decide whether or not the item can be recycled, it’s a very exciting performance.”

Hardin is the recycling champion for the district. She’s always been passionate about going green and has successfully implemented the district-wide green initiative. We want our students and staff to continue to support the green initiatives of IPS. America Recycles Day is on November 15th, we encourage everyone to log on to to find local recycling events your families can participate in together this weekend. More than a celebration, America Recycles Day is the only nationally recognized day dedicated to the promotion of recycling programs in the United States. America Recycles Day is one day to inform and educate. It is one day to get our neighbors, friends and community leaders excited about what can be accomplished when we all work together. It’s one day to make recycling bigger and better 365 days a year. IPS keeps getting greener!