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Sanitation Commissioner John J. Doherty Announces Winners of the 2009 Golden Apple Awards

Thursday, June 11, 2009 | Vito A. Turso/Matthew LiPani

Press Release # 09-26, FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


Sanitation Commissioner John J. Doherty today announced the winning schools for the Department of Sanitation's 2009 Golden Apple Awards, which recognizes schools for completing educational projects on recycling, waste prevention, and neighborhood beautification.

The annual competition (open only to schools in New York City) consists of three contests: TrashMasters! Super Recyclers, showcasing model NYC school recycling programs; TrashMasters! Reduce and Reuse Challenge, honoring waste prevention practices; and TrashMasters! Team Up to Clean Up, which for more than 31 years has encouraged students to clean up and beautify their schools and neighborhoods. The Golden Shovel Award recognizes outstanding indoor or outdoor composting efforts. In addition, the New York Restoration Project (NYRP), founded and chaired by entertainer Bette Midler, recognizes and spotlights the most inspirational reclamation project with its Rose Award Certificate of Appreciation.

In each Golden Apple Awards contest, schools competed within their grade division (elementary, intermediate, or high school) for borough and citywide honors by conceiving and completing cross-curriculum projects that meet educational standards.

Schools entering the contests, coordinated by the DSNY Bureau of Waste Prevention, Reuse and Recycling, must demonstrate their students' efforts with essays, photos, drawings, and other classroom work. Submissions are judged by representatives from DSNY, the Department of Education, other government officials, and from several local environmental organizations, including the NYC Compost Project. The Golden Apple Awards represent one of a handful of competitions in the entire country that requires the demonstration of real-world results.

New York City's blue and green recycling bin characters will attend upcoming award presentations for the schools receiving citywide honors. The popular recycling mascots will pose for pictures with students at these events. All winning schools will receive certificates and participating students will receive t-shirts and other gifts.

Sanitation Commissioner Doherty said: "The City is getting greener every day with the help of teachers and students who recycle more, waste less, and clean up and beautify their schools and neighborhoods. It's rewarding to see that our investment in our students and the environment continue to yield spectacular results. The Department applauds the efforts of every student, teacher, principal, custodian, and parent who participated in this year's Golden Apple Awards competition."

The list of the 2009 Golden Apple Awards winning schools and their projects follows.

NYC Department of Sanitation
Bureau of Waste Prevention, Reuse and Recycling


2009 Golden Apple Awards Winners
(by Contest, then by Borough)





ACORN High School for Social Justice K498
Citywide & Brooklyn Borough Winner (High School Division)
This school focused on making sure recycling is set up properly in all classrooms, offices, and in the cafeteria. Recycling detectives were in charge of documenting and analyzing compliance. Other activities included a recycling-themed essay, and contests for trivia, rap songwriting, and poster design.

PS 160K William T Sampson
Citywide & Brooklyn Borough Winner (Elementary Division)
A school-wide, comprehensive recycling effort started on day one at PS160 in Brooklyn. The principal clearly detailed the expectations for recycling to all teachers and staff. Student recycling monitors made sure daily that the proper materials were going into the proper bins in classrooms and the cafeteria, culminating in a competition aimed at five consecutive days of perfect recycling.

PS 230K Doris Cohen
Brooklyn Borough Runner-Up (Elementary Division) &
NYRP Rose Award

Students took every opportunity to promote recycling and waste awareness at PS 230 in Brooklyn. Students created Public Service Announcements, volunteered as classroom, cafeteria, and movie night recycling monitors, and created informational posters to spread the word about why and how to recycle. A school-wide assembly and Earth Day art project reinforced the recycling message.

PS 277K Gerritsen Beach
Brooklyn Honorable Mention (Elementary Division)
Super Recycler Team members monitored recycling in each class. Students created posters, skits, and dances about the importance of recycling. The Parent's Association embraced the school's recycling effort by sponsoring an assembly called "Kid Power" about making environmentally conscious choices.

PS 154K Magnet School for Science & Technology
1625 11 AVE
Finalist (Elementary Division)
Classrooms competed for Golden Trash Can awards for the best recycling effort. Green Team members promoted recycling through instructional posters and an online blog, and enforced recycling by monitoring items found in the trash and recycling bins. The school newspaper reported on recycling progress and Green Week festivities, which included how-to recycle classes and a school-wide Go Green Assembly with skits and songs.


MS 224 Manhattan East School
410 EAST 100 ST
NEW YORK, NY 10029
Manhattan Borough Winner (Intermediate Division)
Students introduced recycling in areas shared with other schools in the building: the front office, hallways, and cafeteria. A bulletin board and posters raised recycling awareness building wide. Grades competed in a weeklong cafeteria recycling competition and posted the amount of bottles, cans, and drink boxes recycled. The Environmental Action class monitored recycling compliance and awarded "Super Recyclers" and "Most Improved" certificates to the best.

Eleanor Roosevelt High School M416
411 EAST 76 ST
NEW YORK, NY 10021
Manhattan Borough Winner (High School Division)
The Green Team turned "Trashy into Classy" with motivational and educational activities including posters, a bulletin board, game-show style trivia competitions, and an Earth Day presentation. Students encouraged paper recycling by placing properly labeled bins in all classrooms, offices, and lounges. They started a milk carton recycling campaign in the cafeteria and encouraged bottle and can recycling with properly labeled bins on each floor.


PS 173Q Fresh Meadows
174-10 67 AVE
QUEENS, NY 11365
Queens Honorable Mention (Elementary Division)
Students, teachers, and custodial staff worked together with the principal to recycle in classrooms, hallways, the lunchroom, and office. Students used scientific observation skills to measure and weigh the paper recycled in the classroom, and graphed results. The school started a vegetable garden and composted yard trimmings on the school grounds using a mulch mower. Students' presentations in the science fair focused on recycling and composting.

PS 188Q Kingsbury School
QUEENS, NY 11364
Queens Honorable Mention (Elementary Division)
Classroom lessons, a school-wide mural project, speeches by student council representatives, and a poster contest communicated awareness of why and how to recycle at PS 188. "Recycling Police" in each classroom monitored recycling compliance. Students charted progress of the recycling program over time, and demonstrated the ability to recycle food waste through composting.

PS 224 @ 26Q
195-02 69 AVE
QUEENS, NY 11365
Finalist (Elementary Division)
Students in this special needs school joined with the elementary school in their building to improve recycling building wide. Teachers and staff reinforced recycling fundamentals through entertaining and educational activities. Students competed in a recycling relay race to put items in the correct bins, created a recycling song, based on the green and blue bins, and custom signs to promote correct recycling.

PS 97Q Forest Park School
85-52 85 ST
QUEENS, NY 11421
Finalist (Elementary Division)
The school's Recycling Athletes Club, with the support of the Parent's Association, started a recycling program. Club members researched what can be recycled, and developed a presentation to educate their parents. They also conducted surveys to document what was thrown out or recycled in each classroom, as well as at their homes.

Staten Island:

PS 54R Charles W Leng
Staten Island Honorable Mention (Elementary Division)
Students, teachers, and staff collaborated to set up and implement a new recycling program. Persuasive letters written by students convinced their Assemblyman to provide a stipend to buy bins. They placed labeled recycling bins throughout the school and "Trashbusters" club members created motivational posters and documented how much was collected each week.

PS 69R Daniel D Tompkins
Finalist (Elementary Division)
A motivated first grader single-handedly got her school to set up a recycling program. She worked with the custodian to obtain, label, and place recycling bins in the classrooms and office. She created and distributed flyers to teachers and staff about what to recycle. Her class helped promote the effort by making posters to hang around the school. The lower grades also incorporated recycling into social studies and literacy lessons.





Brooklyn Technical High School
Citywide & Brooklyn Borough Winner (High School Division)
A small but committed Green Leaf Student Club motivated the large student body at Brooklyn Tech to reduce what they throw away through an awareness campaign, and by holding a series of collection drives. The Club promoted a reuse message through artwork, handmade brochures, tabling events, and letters to teachers. To track their individual behavior modification, Club members kept daily logs of their waste reduction efforts.


PS 40 Augustus Saint-Gaudens
320 E 20 ST
NEW YORK, NY 10003
Citywide & Manhattan Borough Winner (Elementary Division)
The Super Green Eco Team promoted waste reduction and reuse by implementing multiple strategies: the use of scrap paper, reusable cleaning cloths, and reusable water bottles. They held competitions to motivate participation and documented changes in behavior. As a way to go paperless, the school developed a “School Hub” intranet site to communicate with parents and staff.

St George School
215 E 6 ST
NEW YORK, NY 10003
Manhattan Borough Runner-Up (Elementary Division)
St. George School integrated its commitments to community service and waste reduction through ongoing donation drives and an annual Earth Day swap-your-stuff event where students exchange various belongings and donate any leftover items to charity. To further foster awareness, students entered a how green can you be? contest to describe their waste habits, created art projects reusing everyday objects, and wrote poetry and song lyrics highlighting the importance of conservation.

Grace Church School
86 4 AVE
NEW YORK, NY 10003
Citywide & Manhattan Borough Winner (Intermediate Division)
The student Green Team, in partnership with the school's Sustainability Task Force, led Grace Church School's efforts to reduce waste and consumption. The school facilitated multiple initiatives to actively reuse materials. They held a Halloween costume swap and an ongoing "freecycle" exchange program, sold bags created from reused material and energy efficient "Holiday LED Lights" for fundraisers, and collected spent pens for artistic reuse by The Pen Guy.

MS 224 Manhattan East School
410 EAST 100 ST
NEW YORK, NY 10029
Manhattan Borough Runner-Up (Intermediate Division) &
Manhattan Golden Shovel Award for Master School Composter

Manhattan East targeted paper for reuse and waste reduction by collecting and using scrap paper, encouraging teachers to make double-sided copies, and transferring grade and progress reporting to an online system. The Manhattan Compost Project selected this school for the NYC Compost Project Golden Shovel Award because the Environmental Action class composted food waste using a worm bin, learned how the decomposition process occurs, and used the finished compost to grow new plants, and planned a partnership with another school in their building to revive a languishing rooftop garden.


PS 188Q Kingsbury School
QUEENS, NY 11364
Queens Golden Shovel Award for Master School Composter
The Queens Compost Project selected this school for the NYC Compost Project Golden Shovel Award because this school's fall leaves, Halloween pumpkins, and fruit and vegetable scraps from the cafeteria didn't go into trash can and garbage trucks; they went into a compost bin instead. Students, teachers, and the school's custodial staff worked together to collect their organic waste, and transform it into nutrient-rich compost that improves soil health and provides essential nutrients to plants.





PS 229Q Emanuel Kaplan
67-25 51 RD
QUEENS, NY, 11377
Citywide and Queens Borough Winner (Elementary Division)
Students, teachers, and staff teamed up to "Wake Up Woodside". After learning the fundamentals of teamwork from the Queens College Varsity Baseball team, they planted over 30 trees at the school and surrounding neighborhood through the NY State Dept of Environmental Conservation School Seeding Program, in support of the Million TreesNYC mission. Staff and students also teamed up with the PTA to beautify the school yard, and improve the landscaping around a new school sign.

PS 47Q Chris Galas
QUEENS, NY 11693
Queens Borough Winner (Intermediate Division)
PS/MS 47Q in Queens honored a late, beloved teacher in their Team Up to Clean Up project. Students collected aluminum cans from home and from the cleanup of a neighborhood lot to create a memorial sculpture of a fish. Teachers integrated lessons into all curricular areas to plan, design, and explore the significance of the sculpture and the materials.

To find out more about the NYC Department of Sanitation's Golden Apple Awards, visit: