Recycling School Supplies

May 16, 2022

School’s almost out! Make sure to recycle those used school supplies.

Hooray for summer vay-cay! At the end of the year, many students have used school supplies that need to be disposed of. Did you know that most of these supplies are recyclable? Read on to learn how to properly recycle school supplies.

Take your supplies to drop-off locations

Some local office supply retailers, like Staples, have recycling drop-off boxes for plastic binders and folders.

BIC Stationary Recycling Program 

Have lots of empty pens and dried up markers? TerraCycle, a social enterprise working to eliminate waste, has a program where you can mail in any brand of writing instruments, glue sticks, watercolor dispensers, paint sets, and flexible packaging. Simply request to send a package filled with supplies like the ones listed above, pack them in an appropriately-sized box, print the free shipping label, and ship it. 

Paper supplies can be tossed in your cart

Maybe you don’t need those notes from AP History anymore. If you took notes in a notebook, remove the plastic covers or metal spiral (those materials need to be thrown away) and then toss the covers and paper into the recycling cart. 

Reuse some supplies for next year

If your binders or notebooks or folders stay in good condition throughout the year, consider reusing them next year or next semester. Or, if you don’t fill an entire notebook, keep it on hand for scratch paper or another class where fewer notes are required. Nowadays, you can also buy pens with refillable ink cartridges. 

Do you have what you need to recycle?

Call GFL Environment at (309) 688-0760 or click “Sign Up for Recycling” to request your 95-gallon single stream recycling cart with wheels and a lid, with no deposit required. To take advantage of the new recycling collection, you must use the provided cart.

If you have too much recycling for your cart on a regular basis, you may request an additional 95-gallon cart at no cost.