Greening of Alcoa

Elementary school earns Earth Flag through environmental efforts

Raising a new Earth Flag from Ijam’s Nature Center are, from left, Natalie Beaty, Max Yates, Kristin Purvis, Madison Holliday, Yasmine Depriest and Amelia Porter.

Photo by Leslie Karnowski

Raising a new Earth Flag from Ijam’s Nature Center are, from left, Natalie Beaty, Max Yates, Kristin Purvis, Madison Holliday, Yasmine Depriest and Amelia Porter.

Teacher Hope McDonald, left, watches as students raise the new flag, including Natalie Beaty holding the flag, Max Yates, Madison Holliday, Amelia Porter and Yasmine Depriest.

Teacher Hope McDonald, left, watches as students raise the new flag, including Natalie Beaty holding the flag, Max Yates, Madison Holliday, Amelia Porter and Yasmine Depriest.

Participating in the Earth Flag event are, from left, Kristin Purvis, Natalie Beaty, Amelia Porter and Max Yates.

Participating in the Earth Flag event are, from left, Kristin Purvis, Natalie Beaty, Amelia Porter and Max Yates.

Alcoa Elementary School students and teachers gather in front of the school to raise the Earth Flag presented by Ijam’s Nature Center.

Alcoa Elementary School students and teachers gather in front of the school to raise the Earth Flag presented by Ijam’s Nature Center.

Alcoa Elementary School is seeing green. The school recently was presented with an Earth flag from Ijams Nature Center. The honor was to recognize the students and teachers for their commitment to preserving the environment and recycling.

Kristin Purvis, a paraprofessional at the school, said the initiative started with one group and spread. “The Community Club initiated this but all the students are doing it, and we’ve had good teacher turnout,” she said. “Everyone is working well as a team on it.”

Purvis said there has to be recycling in all the rooms in order to qualify. “We’ve done over 7,000 pounds of every thing from cardboard, to cans, paper and plastic,” Purvis said. “We’ve been doing it about a year now. We’ve got a really good system going.”

Purvis said the students also have to be reusing resources, and they have to do composting. “Instead of using one side of paper, you use the other side, too, and then recycle it,” she said.

Purvis said not many schools in the area have earned this distinction. Fort Craig School of Dynamic Learning and Fairview Elementary each have Earth Flags from Ijam’s Nature Center.

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