Congratulations to the Heather Hill Green Team! This active group of students and educators made school district history through teamwork, research and letter writing!
In the fall, The Green Team noticed that Ceres, the school district hot lunch provider, had changed food packaging from cardboard to styrofoam containers. At that point, the Green Team had already been using excess cardboard for projects around the school, as well as donations for local veterinarians to use as pet feeding containers. The group was unhappy about the change and decided to do some research. They came up with some important facts: 1. small amounts of chemicals used in the production of styrofoam can leak into hot food 2.styrofoam never goes away. In fact, they found that currently, 30% of landfills are made up of styrofoam products. Once their research was complete, the team decided something needed to be done. So, they wrote a letter detailing their research and asked the Regional Co-ordinator of Ceres to change the food containers back to cardboard. To their surprise, the Regional Co-ordinator wrote back right away saying she would look into the matter.
After winter break the Team received a letter from Ceres stating they would switch back to cardboard lunch containers for all of School District 161! The Green Team was thrilled with this response and students felt empowered. Joan Mahler, one of the staff member leaders of the group, said she felt, "Students learned not to be afraid to speak up. They learned to be persistent."
The Heather Hill Green Team was interviewed by the Homewood-Flossmoor Chronicle (see link below). They were also honored by the Flossmoor School District 161 School Board, on January 22, 2018, for their outstanding work. The students and staff presented their project to the board detailing the series of events. They ended with a quote from Margaret Mead, "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has."
We're proud of The Green Team! The way they incorporated the power of research and writing, as well as their persistence, are qualities we strive to instill in all students at Heather Hill. Thank you to The Green Team for being such great models of citizenship and change!