Get the Foam Out!

RIDE establishes a $5 million program to support schools in eliminating Styrofoam from their school meal programs

It is estimated that RI schools use up to 11.5 million Styrofoam trays per school year. This represents a significant amount of waste going to the landfill on a daily basis. According to the RI Resource Recovery Corporation, at current loading rates the Central Landfill will reach capacity in 2043.  Consistent with State Priorities, RIDE’s Strategic Plan, and Rhode Island General Law, the Rhode Island Department of Education has created a new initiative in FY 2024 that will enable schools to reduce their carbon footprints through the elimination of Styrofoam foodservice materials. This $5 million program allows us to offer grant funding to schools around the state that, when combined with existing Federal funding streams, will ensure that schools can best leverage available funding to make meaningful investments into their schools, our students, and the environment.   

Get the Foam Out Informational Flyer

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School Waste Assessments

Did you know? RIGL § 16-111- 2 requires that educational entities conduct a school waste audit once every three (3) years. 

RI Resource Recovery Corporation is here to help! Start by completing the "Help Starting or Improving a Program"  form on the RIRRC website. From there, the Special Waste Coordinator will reach out to discuss next steps with you. 

Questions? Contact David Bordieri by email or at (401) 228-3110.

Litter Prevention & Recycling Awareness

Did you know? RIGL § 16-22-35 requires that every public elementary and middle school student receive education on litter prevention, reducing and reusing materials, and recycling awareness on an annual basis.

RI Resource Recovery and RIDE are here to help! One of RIRRC's Education and Outreach Facilitators can come to your school to do a FREE in-school presentation. To get started, complete the Presentation/Speaks form on the RIRRC website. 

Want to take it out of the classroom? Request a full facility tour/field trip to Resource Recovery, located in Johnston, by completing the Tour/Field Trips form. 

Food Waste

Did you know? RIGL § 23-18.9-17 requires educational entities that are within fifteen (15) miles of an authorized composting facility and are generating thirty (30) tons per year of organic waste materials to recycle that organic waste at an authorized facility. 

This means that most RI schools should be separating and diverting their food waste, but many don't know where to start. 

Help your students to become food waste warriors by partnering with organizations like the RI School Recycling Project and Clean Ocean Access to start a composting program at your school!

For more information and resources, check out the "Sustainability in School Meals" section of RIDE's Child Nutrition Programs website. 

In the Classroom

For more resources and classroom tools, check out RI Resource Recovery's website for a variety of resources, including: 

If you have any questions regarding the many free programs offered RIRRC, email or call their education line at (401) 228-3256.


Organizations around the state want to help your school with proper waste management! Check out our partner organizations and learn more about how they can help your school achieve your sustainability and environmental education goals.