KHS takes up War on Waste Challenge

The ABC’s influential War on Waste program has chosen Kiama High to feature in the school waste challenge for its next series.

The first round of filming has finished and the challenge to reduce the amount of rubbish going to landfill is well under way. The film crew will be back to document the progress early next term, with the series due to come back to TV in July.

The challenge is being driven by a core team of Waste Warriors from Year 7.

“They represent the excellent cultures that have been developed at the four local primary schools,” says Kiama High Principal Catherine Glover.

“The first approach was made to War on Waste by a local primary school, after the local Community of School’s environment group discussed how we can tap into the expertise that has been developed at the primary schools and the enthusiasm of the students.

“It worked in with the program wanting to show how a larger school could tackle the problem.”

To establish a base case, a week’s worth of rubbish was retained on site so it could be categorised. Over 50 students volunteered to help the Waste Warriors sort the contents.

Principal Catherine Glover with War on Waste’s
Craig Reucassel and teacher driving the project,
Kim Cutting, with the Waste Warriors and their
helpers on sorting day

The War on Waste then provided an extra range of bins, for things like paper recycling and organics, to reduce the landfill component.

“The inventory clearly outlined where things were coming from, and is allowing us to target and address a reduction in land fill,” says Ms Glover.

“There were lots of things that we weren’t doing that we can do now because of the new bins making the choice highly visible.

“Things aren’t just mindlessly being put into a skip and taken away.”

Ms Glover says in a way the project is mirroring the waste initiatives Kiama Council has introduced into people’s homes.

“It is a great learning experience for the whole school that requires a big culture shift.

“Our Waste Warriors’ role is to keep recycling top of mind throughout the school.

“Just because they are in Year 7 doesn’t mean they can’t be leaders.”

She says the support of the teachers, canteen, cleaners, staff and the parent community is an essential element in the success of the project.








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