Student Works To Eliminate Food Waste At School

Lauren Cincotta, Editor in Chief

One of the biggest changes students have experienced as they return to in-person learning is lunch being delivered to classrooms during directed study block. Rather than making their way through the crowded lunch lines and surveying the choices, lunch is delivered in brown paper bags. These bags contain enough food for all students in the classroom, regardless of whether students choose to take it. When junior Shannon Kosior returned to hybrid learning, she noticed how much of the food was going to waste.

“Our janitor, Onix, came into my classroom to collect the left over lunch food and [I] was appalled by how much food was still left in the bag and how much he was going to have to throw out,” Kosior explained. This prompted her to take action, contacting the Superintendent, Principal, and Director of Food Services, Mr. Nardi.

“I asked them if it would be okay to take all of this food and donate it to people in need,” she continued. After calling West Springfield Parish Cupboard and the Springfield Rescue Mission, she learned that they would accept donations of unopened foods, fruits, vegetables and juices. Kosior then met with administrators to put a plan in place. During her in-person learning days, and with the help of her brother, sophomore Joe Kosior, and other students and staff,  she goes around collecting bags of unused food from all of the classrooms in the building. Then she spends time sorting out what can and cannot be donated. On the days that she is not in school, she credits Ms. Fleury with collecting and sorting the food which allows the program to make donations multiple days a week.

Even on the days she is not in school, Kosior makes the trip to make donations to the Springfield Rescue Mission and West Springfield Parish Cupboard. The program has even expanded to include collections from John Ashley and other elementary schools including Fausey, Memorial and Mitteneague and the middle school. These additional donations allow for two or three donations during the week.