The Bergen County Utilities Authority recently awarded grants to Hillsdale's three public schools for their ongoing environmental awareness programs, according to BCUA officials.
The grants will be used to expand existing programs at the schools, according to Hillsdale Green Team Member and Meadowbrook mom Steaphanie Breuer. The BCUA awarded more than $84,000 grants to 90 Bergen County schools as part of the program this year.
"Even at school, we have to create a more sustainable way of handling our daily lives," Breuer said.
George G. White Middle School will use a $600 grant to expand their lunchtime composting program and develop a garden which will be maintained by students.
Anne Blanche Smith School received a $998 grant to expand its recycling program.
Meadowbrook School will also use a grant to expand its recycling program, though the sum of the grant was not immediately available. Breuer said more recycling bins would be added inside and outside the school, with a particular focus on the cafeteria. Students from the school's "safety patrol" will serve as the "green safety patrol" and oversee the seperation of recyclables and trash while educating younger students at the school.
Breuer said she hoped the programs would promote sustainability beyond Hillsdale's schools.
"We have to give everybody — the students, the teachers and the parents — the feeling that this is something very important," Breuer said. "The kids bring it home to their families, they actually make the difference in our communities."