Lunchtime at Jeremy Ranch Elementary School comes with the usual din of children laughing, eating, and talking, but as the kids finish their food something different happens. Each child makes their way to plastic bins in the middle of the cafeteria and begins to sort the items left on their tray between those that can and can’t be composted.

Student members of the school’s Green Team supervise their peers during this process. They help younger classmates put food and garbage into the right bins, and correct any mistakes. “We stand by the compost bins, take trays and stack them,” said Lily Thomas, a fifth-grade Green Team volunteer at JRES. “If anybody accidentally throws their trash in the compost bin we usually have a grabber and we grab it all out.”

This is all a part of Jeremy Ranch Elementary’s composting program, which is run in collaboration with the Parent Teacher Organization, and community partners like EATS Park City, Recycle Utah, and Spoil to Soil. Similar programs have popped up in schools throughout Park City School District.

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