Recycling our resources

Published 12:00 am Monday, January 13, 2003

For the past three years, Wednesday is the day the Developmentally Cognitively Delayed Classes sort through the recycling at the Austin High School. Each class period, three student volunteers are assigned to separate paper by white, colored and newspaper. The different papers are put into barrels that will be taken to the recycling center.

Elissa Fisher, a 10th grader, likes recycling day. She said she likes getting out of class and going to the basement of the high school.

"This is part of community service for the school. The students participate with recycling for the town," said teacher Connie Boes.

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A teacher or a paraprofessional supervises the students while they do their chores. The students talk as they sort through the paper and sometimes they find colored paper they keep or a notebook that hasn't been written in. Shirley Kiefer is one of the paraprofessionals that works at the school. She jokes with the students as they separate the different colored papers. The students' hands get dry as they sort the paper, but they don't seem to mind as they don't have to do schoolwork when they help with the recycling.

Boxes are left in each classroom to hold paper to be recycled and picked up on Wednesdays. The work is not heavy, just tedious, as the students sort through paper after paper.

"The Developmentally Cognitively Delayed Classes are an excellent program. This is a good experience for the kids doing the recycling," said Kiefer.