Schools, teachers invited to participate in Keep Pa. Beautiful campaign

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FILE – In this Tuesday, Aug. 10, 2021 file photo, Students, some wearing protective masks, arrive for the first day of school at Sessums Elementary School in Riverview, Fla. President Joe Biden has called school district superintendents in Florida and Arizona, praising them for doing what he called “the right thing” after their respective boards implemented mask requirements in defiance of their Republican governors amid growing COVID-19 infections. (AP Photo/Chris O’Meara, File)

BLAIR COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — Pennsylvania officials invite teachers to keep their school grounds litter-free through the Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful Litter Free School Zone Program.

The program encourages hands-on activities to teach environmental responsibility and can be combined with a lesson on how litter may affect animals, people, water quality and economics. To be a Litter Free School Zone, schools must plan two improvement projects per school that can include litter cleanups and beautification events.

“I am so excited to bring all the great things from Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful to Bellwood.  We are starting our Environmental Club this year, so this will be a great objective for them,” Principal, Matt Stinson, of Myers Elementary School in Bellwood said.

Results are reported to Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful and are added to their statewide community improvement totals, making it an opportunity to be a part of something bigger. Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful provides a Litter Free School Zone sign for each participating school.

“Campus litter sweeps are a great way for students to make a positive impact on the local environment and community. Picking up litter makes an immediate and noticeable difference. It connects us to each other and makes us feel part of something bigger,” President of Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful, Shannon Reiter said.

Litter Free School Zone Program events can get free cleanup supplies through Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful’s Pick Up Pennsylvania. Registered events receive free bags and gloves through a partnership of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, PennDOT and the Ocean Conservancy.

There are currently over 90 schools participating in the program. All schools are welcome to participate – elementary school, middle school, high school, public or private.

Schools interested in joining the program can visit the Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful website.

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