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Sonoma County Waste Management Agency

Recycling at school

Children recycling at school

Resources for schools

Public Resources Code, sections 42620-42622 requires the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery to provide assistance to school districts in establishing and implementing source reduction and recycling programs. This assistance includes a survey of school districts on their level of program implementation, development of a model waste reduction program, training and ongoing technical and informational assistance, and information on programs for other states and institutions.

California Education Code sections 32370-32376, encourages each school district to establish and maintain a paper recycling program in all classrooms, administrative offices, and other areas owned or leased by the school district. These sections also encourage school districts to:

  • Purchase recycled paper.
  • Purchase the paper with the highest percentage of postconsumer waste.
  • Revise procurement specifications to eliminate discrimination against recycled paper and to give preference to the purchase of recycled paper.
  • Eliminate the purchase of paper and paper products, which are deemed potential contaminants of the educational agency's paper recycling program.

With the passage of AB 341, California’s Mandatory Commercial Recycling Law, public entities including school districts, schools, California State universities, universities of California and community colleges that generate 4 cubic yards or more of commercial solid waste per week are required to recycle.  Additionally, California passed AB 1826, California’s Mandatory Commercial Organics Recycling Law, which requires certain businesses to arrange for organic waste recycling services.  The purpose of these laws are to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by diverting commercial solid waste to recycling and composting efforts.

Garbage collection is provided to the schools by city franchise agreement. Single-stream recycling service is always provided at no charge. Recycling collection may be provided by the franchised hauler or by other companies. In addition, some cities require their garbage company to provide education outreach to the schools as part of their franchise agreement. 

Do you want to start or expand your school’s recycling program?

Contact Sonoma County Waste Management Agency for free recycling assistance at (707) 565-2413 / (707) 565-3375 or

Services provided are:

  • Free On-site waste assessments.
  • Sonoma County Recycling Guide (English  & Spanish) versions.
  • Posters/letters for single-stream recycling education and education about the law.
  • Recycling containers for indoor use. Please note supplies are limited.
  • Reusable shopping bags. Please note supplies are limited.
  • Educational student presentations

Additional services are provided by your garbage company if your school is located in Cloverdale, Cotati, Healdsburg, Sebastopol or Windsor. If your school is not located in one of aforementioned jurisdictions, similar support by request, may be provided to your school. Contact the Ratto Group's recycling coordinators at (707) 588-3684 or (707) 585-5273.

Sonoma County Waste Management Agency ● 2300 County Center Drive, Suite B-100 ● Santa Rosa, CA 95403