School Waste Audit Program

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students putting counted plastic bottles into large bin

It's time to talk about waste!

Integrating waste and resource recovery education and waste reduction practices into every aspect of school life not only benefits our environment, it also helps schools reduce wastes produced at school and improves quality of life for the community.

The majority of waste generated in schools is made up of lunch packaging, paper and cardboard, recyclables and food waste. For many schools, much of the waste generated at school goes to landfill, which is the least desirable option for the management of waste.

Our landfills are filling up fast and there are concerns about the long term impacts of this disposal method. The 5R’s – Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Repair and Recycle - are designed to get people thinking about the waste they create and where their waste goes after they dispose of it. As landfill capacity continues to shrink, and Australia moves towards valuing waste as a resource within a circular economy, there's an urgent need to rethink the waste we generate and how this waste is disposed of.

Schools are in a great position to significantly reduce the amount of waste ultimately sent to landfill and have an opportunity to send home lessons learned from a waste audit activity. This has the potential to create a widespread positive impact on the way the local community thinks about and handles its waste.

All the resources you need are here

This School Waste Audit Guide is designed to help schools carry out their own waste audit. The guide provides a range of tools to assist in preparing for an audit, undertaking the audit, and taking practical action to reduce the amount of waste created and sent to landfill.

Curriculum links

Waste Audits and the development of a School Waste Reduction Plan provide opportunities for students across a range of subject areas. The following are some of those links:

Stage 2

  • ST2-1WS-S
  • ST2-2DP-T
  • EN2-1A
  • GE2-3
  • MA2-2WM
  • MA2-3WM
  • MA2-11MG
  • MA2-18SP

Stage 3

  • ST3-1WS-S
  • ST3-2DPT
  • EN3-1A
  • GE3-3
  • MA3-2WM
  • MA3-3WM
  • MA3-7NA
  • MA311MG
  • MA3-18SP

Stage 4

  • SC4-4WS
  • SC4-7WS
  • GE4-3
  • MA4-2WM
  • MA-3WM
  • MA4-5NA

Stage 5

  • SC5-4WS
  • SC5-7WS
  • GE5-3
  • MA5.1-2WM
  • MA5.1-3WM
  • MA5.3-4NA

We can help you!

Council can assist you to implement your waste audit with your students. Please contact our Resource Recovery Education Officer to find out more.