Keeping CCHS cleaner and the world greener
November 30, 2016
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At the beloved Cathedral Catholic High School lunch tables, students enjoy a social break from the classroom. However, the food and laughter results in abandoned Cheetoh wrappers, which contributes to the overall earth’s pollution.
Although this issue may seem trivial among other important challenges, leaving trash sends a negative message about our attitude toward our campus and earth. At a school like CCHS, we are privileged to have an outstanding maintenance team that keeps our school beautiful. Out of respect for their daily efforts, picking up our mess should be a habit of good manners and citizenship.
As the fall semester moves into December, the endless “pick up your trash” admonishments echo through email and morning announcements. The CCHS faculty and maintenance staff view this waste problem as an ongoing issue that has yet to be resolved.
Acknowledging this is a high school campus filled with caffeinated students, teachers and security guards monitor break and lunch as a friendly reminder to stash cell phones, but also to dispose food in trash cans when the 10-minute bell sounds.
“Students tend to prolong their break by waiting until the 5-minute bell to clean their area,” Learning Center teacher Shanna Tierman said. “By doing so, wrappers and food end up being carelessly thrown into overflowing trash bins while kids sprint to class.”
Keep America Beautiful.org reports that people’s attitudes cause 85 percent of littering-related issues. In addition, the presence of litter leads to about 15 percent of all litter, according to KAB.
“People who see litter are more likely to litter,” KAB researchers concluded.
Consequently, I urge you to buck the above trend and instead channel a positive attitude and courteous example. The bountiful earth in which we live and prosper from deserves the same respect given to our temporary home of CCHS. If waste is disregarded on our very own campus, the student body’s care for the school, let alone our environment will not be a positive reflection of our potential as a school.
“Even though we are blessed to have a faculty that cleans up after us, it is disrespectful,” CCHS student Nicole Argueta ’17 said. “If we are willing to litter on our campus, how can we expect to care for the environment as a whole? It might be one piece of trash, but that one piece of trash can get washed down the sewer.”
Argueta believes that if we have a mindset that one person can’t make a negative influence, then those behaviors begin bioaccumulating a mess so great that “the consequences seem to be too late. One example would be the current tragedy of the Great Barrier Reef dying.”
With a variety of clubs and organizations on campus, each class can find itself impacting our campus while having a greater impact on the world. If regarded as a domino effect, CCHS students can act as dominoes in preserving our natural resources that are so commonly taken for granted.
“Environmental Club works to improve and take care of our community on campus as well as our global community,” Co-President Lexi Bone ‘17 said. “By making small improvements, like adding water stations to encourage the use of refillable water bottles or by helping students create environmentally-friendly habits, we improve [not only] our own personal conditions, but also help to lessen our ecological footprint.”
Humanity needs to realize that these issues start at schools and homes. For its part, the CCHS administration encourages students to get involved with beach clean ups, Environmental Club, and self-monoriting, keeping CCHS cleaner and the world greener.