St. Xavier High School was officially named a Laudato Si' Community by the Catholic Social Action office of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati on October 4. None of this would be possible without the great work of the Laudato Si' committee.
The following paragraph, written by the committee, was provided to the Archdiocese:
We had previously chosen the following as our religious/spiritual goal for the Ohio Catholic Schools’ Accreditation process: In response to Pope Francis’ encyclical letter Laudato Si', students will protect the environment beginning with increased recycling and more responsible water use. This led us to apply for the Laudato Si recognition award. We underwent an intensive review of our infrastructure for both recycling and water use, adding strategically located recycling containers and additional water stations throughout the school. Signage and consistent messaging brought it home. The students were encouraged to bring their own durable water bottles to school, thereby reducing the use of plastics. These initiatives were followed by a drive to protect and improve the natural beauty of our campus, our God-given common home.
Additional work by the committee includes:
- Installation of water stations and messaging to promote the use of refillable water bottles.
- Pairing of a recycling bin with each trash can with clear labeling. Community-wide education and signs posted in the cafeteria to inform community members on what can and cannot be recycled.
- School-wide waste audit during lunch as a preliminary step in beginning a composting program at school.
- Installation of multiple pollinator gardens on campus and education on the importance of planting native species. Upcoming installation of campus beehives this spring
- Forest ecology education events in our woods on campus and the development of a service project centered on removing invasive species on campus.
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