Zero Waste Schools Awards

zero-waste-school-awards-main-picThe Zero Waste School Awards offer an opportunity for students to earn prizes and cash awards for their school by posting pictures and videos relating to their sustainability and zero waste efforts! In short, by sharing the great work you are doing to help your school go zero waste, you can get cool gear and earn awards for your school.

Current Contests

Material for the Arts’ Reuse Challenge

Throughout the school year, hundreds of schools across New York City will be joining in the Reuse Challenge, creating art pieces and school projects by creatively reusing the leftover materials in their communities. #MFTAReuseChallenge

GrowNYC Recycling Champions Program’s (RCP) Super Recyclers

Celebrating excellent school recycling programs, RCP’s Super Recyclers is open to any NYC DOE school that is registered on the ZWS website. Students will post examples of their individual efforts, as well as the collective efforts of their school, highlighting success and unique solutions.

Finalists will be visited by RCP staff (unscheduled visit) to ensure that proper recycling set up has been maintained). #RCPSuperRecyclers

Zero Waste Schools (ZWS) Challenge

Celebrating the roll out of the first 100 ZWS, a winner will be selected from each ZWS route (one winner in Manhattan, one winner in Brooklyn), based on compliance data collected by DSNY staff and observations by RCP/DOE. #ZWSChallenge

Commissioner’s Cup

Celebrating student/staff/community achievement toward making your school community a better place, the Commissioner’s Cup is selected by the Commissioner, highlighting special efforts in sustainability. #CommissionersCup

What You Need to Know

A student alone cannot sign up for a contest. NYCDOE school teachers that would like to sign up for a ZWS account should see their principal or sustainability coordinator to obtain their school’s unique validation code. If they do not have your schools validation code, email .

For more information on any of the contests, visit the Announcements page.