Before setting up a recycling system it’s a good idea to find out what your school is currently throwing away. A waste audit is a great way to get an understanding of how much of each type of material your school throws away. Establishing where certain types of waste are produced in your school will enable you to position your recycling points effectively.

Remember, it’s not just classrooms that produce waste. Include all indoor and outdoor areas of the school (e.g. office, staff room, canteen and playground) to ensure the scheme is most effective.

Most of the waste by weight from schools comes from just two categories: paper and card, and food waste.

Knowing roughly how much of each material your school produces will help you to priorities which materials to recycle and can help to plan what size bins your school will need. The information you gain from the waste audit will help you to work out which recycling collection could be most effective for your school.