Whenever I hear about how some school got caught allowing cell phones (which are not allowed in New York City public schools, but it’s kind of a joke because most kids bring them and use them in school anyway) or how one student was found in school with a weapon or how one teacher said something inappropriate about the president and there’s this whole 20-minute discussion about it on NPR and people call in and are outraged over it, I want to tell everyone how it really is.
News flash: This is what goes on here. Every day.
Take recycling. There was a discussion a few weeks ago on NPR about how this one school doesn’t recycle. Everyone was so shocked that this school threw out all of their paper, cans, bottles, and other recyclable items. And I really wanted to call in and go, “I know another place that doesn’t recycle. It’s called the Bronx.” It seems like the people who decide what’s newsworthy aren’t looking at the big picture. The school I taught at never recycled anything. Disgusting amounts of paper, bottles, and cans were thrown out every day. This is the case in most schools and colleges here. Blue recycling bins are used as garbage cans.
Which is why I was so thrilled to hear NPR today. This time when they reported on a school and city issue, they definitely had a better clue. For 18 years, it’s been the law in New York City that every building (residents, schools, institutions, agencies, commercial businesses) must recycle. NYC had a goal that by 2007, 25% of its garbage would be recycled. We didn’t reach that goal. Only 16.5% of all garbage is recycled. And the stat is even worse for our schools – a pathetic 9.5% of all garbage is recycled there. Sad, but true.
You can listen to the NPR story here.