The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

December 7, 2013

Royal Heights teacher earns grant for recycling project

JOPLIN, Mo. — Nasha Robinson, a counselor at Royal Heights Elementary School in Joplin, has received a $1,500 grant from State Farm Insurance to lead a semester-long service-learning project about recycling.

She is one of 75 recipients of the State Farm Good Neighbor Student Achievement grant this year. The grant is awarded by State Farm in partnership with Youth Service America. The competitive grants support Semester of Service, a service-learning program that engages students in addressing needs in their communities.

Robinson’s project, which will extend through Global Youth Service Day in mid-April, is centered on recycling. Students will study the effects of recycling locally and nationally and brainstorm ways that they can assist the Joplin community.

Students will start with a paper-recycling program in each classroom at Royal Heights, and more specific projects are still being hammered out, Principal Jill White said.

“The students are really in charge of planning those and taking care of those as they go,” she said. “Right now, they’re working on impacting just our school, and that will eventually branch out.”

Students also plan to donate the money they make from recycled materials to local organizations that fight hunger, White said.

In preparing for the semester-long project, students initially brainstormed ideas on which to focus — including hunger issues and poverty — but ultimately settled on recycling, she said.

“They felt like they could have a greater impact on something like recycling and that they could monitor their progress better,” she said.

Steven A. Culbertson, president and chief executive officer of Youth Service America, thanked State Farm Insurance for 12 years of support to the Semester of Service program.

“Many congratulations to Nasha Robinson as she and the Bright Futures service-learning council embark on a semester of service,” he said in a statement. “It is one of the most effective ways we have to enhance student achievement and improve communities.”

Involvement

Students participating in Nasha Robinson’s semester-long recycling project at Royal Heights Elementary School serve on the school’s Bright Futures service-learning council.

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