Schools are one of the places where paper is used in large quantities. Be it notebooks, books, maps, charts, catalogs, notices, circulars or just random paper notes, the school environment is one where there is excessive paper usage - and therefore the possibility of paper wastage. So it’s paramount that educational institutions be proactive in finding ways to save paper in school environments.
One way that schools can significantly reduce their paper consumption is by using digital media as much as possible. Nowadays, most students have access to desktop computers, laptops or smart-phones which allow them to access any and all available digital material with ease. This is a great method that a school can use to save paper.
Going digital will undoubtedly save a lot of money for schools, because they won’t have to invest in printing hundreds of books for certain purposes. They can create a digital version, called a flash catalog or an eCatalog, and then distribute it to the pupils either through e-mail or put it on the school’s Intranet. Then students will have easy access to the study material, and if need be they will be able to print out just the few pages that they need for some reason or another.
Schools tend to print out hundreds of copies of promotional material, such as catalogs and brochures. All such material can be converted to digital page flip catalogs, which can be set up on the school website or send out on a CD/DVD/USB. A page flip flash catalog is interactive and intuitive, and hence works better as a marketing medium. Not to mention the thousands of dollars it can save for the school, since it does not involve any printing or postage costs.
It is also important to make the students aware of the impact that paper production has on the environment. They must understand the importance of recycling paper. Placing clearly marked recycle bins in several places across the school building and grounds will help with this goal immensely because if you make it easy to recycle then the students will most definitely do it. Recycle bins should be placed in strategic locations inside the school. Ideal locations would be the cafeteria, labs and hallways, since that is where students tend to gather. In fact, this idea can be extended further to include items other than paper. Schools can place marked bins for other recyclable material such as aluminum, glass and plastic.
The quantity of paper used in a school obviously depends on the size of the school. In large schools that staff up to 60 teachers, each teacher receives 15,000 sheets of paper for copying purposes, and some might need more. The fact is that close to the school year’s end those quantities are almost completely used up. On top of that, a huge amount of paper is used for administration purposes. So, what needs to be done is to make recycling a must for not only students but teachers and the administration staff as well.