School replaces single-use plastic with reusable water bottles


Nicole Wagenbrenner

In early November, the school started giving students reusable plastic water bottles as part of free lunches in the cafeteria, minimizing single-use plastic. 

According to Teri Faught, Associate Superintendent of Education Services, reusable plastic can be sustainable if students continually reuse it each day, rather than dispose of it after each use. 

The district’s initial effort to be environmentally sustainable began in 2018 with the distribution of aluminum reusable water bottles. 

Student fills reusable water bottle

“Part of the purpose was to…reduce our plastic, [and since] those water bottles are reusable, we are also encouraging students to bring the water bottle with [them] to school the next day and the next day,” Faught said. 

The decision to reuse water bottles stemmed from a collaboration between students and the district. 

“With the big movement of eliminating single-use plastic… students went to the administrators and asked ‘What can we do to help out?’ Faught said. 

“The environmental club was looking at what they can do to help our school… and so then they went to one of the administrators, then [they] went to Matheson who is in charge of food and business services and got approval from him and that’s how it happened,” Faught said. 

There are no official plans to take other sustainable measures. However, the district intends to implement further policy changes regarding sustainability on campus in the future. 

“There has been discussion of forming a collaborative, diverse group of staff and students under the umbrella of environmental safety or conservation,” Faught said.