School News

recycle_the_world_in_handsYou can make a difference!

Opportunities to recycle and keep resources from ending up in the landfill are found all over the county at home, school, special events and shopping malls.  It’s as easy as looking for the container, checking the signage, and tossing an item into it. 

MSS carts are color coded to help you know what goes where.  A green container is for “organics” which includes yard waste, floral arrangements, all food and food soiled paper which will be composted.   A brown container is for recycling glass jars and bottles, aluminum foil, metal cans, and rigid plastic containers #1 – 7 (except no Styrofoam nor compostable plastics please).  Blue is for recycling paper and cardboard, and gray signifies garbage, or landfill, and this is where you put snack wrappers, plastic wrap, plastic bags, and all Styrofoam that can’t be reused.


Studies on recycling signage have found that using images that are familiar to your student body works best.  Use clip art or photos of the actual items from your school lunch program on your signs.  Color School programs recycling_signagephotos and less text is better.  Make your signs fun, even three-dimensional which are especially attention grabbing.   Add your school name or mascot to show endorsement by your school and the importance of recycling. Studies show that providing two or more recycling reminders (example, a sign above and a sticker on the container) increases recycling by 20% and decreases cross contamination of garbage with recyclables by 90%.


Sorting stations should always consist of a garbage can, a recycling can for bottles, and a recycling can for paper, and a composting can, if composting is available at your school.    Sorting stations need to be conveniently located, and the more the better. Students, teachers, parents and custodians are a great resource for recommending locations for sorting stations. 


  • Leave no can alone!  Always pair garbage with recycling carts.  Smaller garbage cart than recycling makes a statement.
  • Have 3 points of signage, on wall, on lid & on front of container
  • Create bright signage with mostly images, little text, photos of what is used at site, 3-D or made by students.

Can Round Up


School program al_the_canIt’s time to step up to the Great American Can Roundup (GACR) School Challenge and  demonstrate your school’s green recycling spirit.  The 4th annual School Challenge kick-off is on America Recycles Day (November 15) and extends to Earth Day (April 22), 2014.  Go now to and register so your school can win up to $6,000.  Registration is required.   Just click on “Registration/Log In” and again under “School Challenge.”  


Al the Can suggests that while at  scope out your competition under “Roundup Results” and view “Resources” where you will find virtually everything for a successful Roundup.   A $1,000 will be awarded to the school that recycles the most aluminum cans per student enrollment in each state and the District of Columbia.  An additional $5,000 will be awarded to the top aluminum can recycling school nationally.  Let’s rally your community, turn up the recycling volume and demonstrate your school’s environmental leadership and commitment.  Game-on at    


It is easy as:  1) Register;   2) Record Pounds Recycled;    3) Submit Verification.

4R Planet School Program

Marin Sanitary Service is proud to present the new 4R Planet School ProgramSchool programs school_tours 4Rs

 Money is tight at schools everywhere.  Let MSS help you stop throwing your valuable resources away. Our goal is to educate, equip and empower school districts, individual schools and/or classrooms to develop comprehensive waste reduction and recycling plans. This program is open to preschool and K-12 public or private schools in San Anselmo, Fairfax, Ross, San Rafael, or Kentfield. Our two full time Education and School recycling Coordinators can a School Recycling Coordinator that can help you develop and implement a comprehensive waste reduction and recycling plan at your school.

Read more: 4R Planet School Program