After careful selection, Grades of Green is proud to announce the top 6 finalist schools who competed in this year’s Trash Free Lunch Challenge.

Elementary School category (in no particular order): Jackson STEM in Pasadena, Collegewood in Walnut, and Will Rogers Learning Community in Santa Monica.

Middle/High School category (in no particular order): Will Rogers in Long Beach, Richardson in Torrance, and La Merced in Montebello.

Congratulations finalists!

Each school that participated in the Trash Free Lunch Challenge and submitted a final application was a rock star in their own way, and in reading the applications, Grades of Green is pleased to give the following recognition:

Bud Carson Middle School: Green Leaders of Tomorrow Award

Furgeson Elementary School: Most Inspirational Program Award

Holy Innocents K-8: Best Community Involvement Award

Jefferson Elementary School: Greenest Cafeteria Award

Phelan Elementary School: Best Green Team Award

Portola Hills Elementary School: Best Sorting Station Award

Vejar Elementary School: Best Student Led Education Award

Willard IB Elementary School: Best Composting Program Award

William Green Elementary School: Best Education Video Award

Congratulations to these schools!

This program would not be possible without the support of our amazing sponsors. We thank the following:  Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County, City of Santa Monica, Lush Cosmetics, Northrop Gruman, Chevron, Ukonserve, County of LA, Go Green Lunch Boxes, Johnson Ohana Charitable Foundation, Legend Socks, Terracycle, Bubi Bottles, Eco Lunchbox, and Deckopedia.  The Challenge would not be possible and so successful without their support and contributions!

From the bottom of our hearts at Grades of Green, we would like to thank all of the schools who participated this year. You are all winners in our eyes as you are now environmental leaders in your communities and an inspiration to other schools around you. Keep up the amazing work; we look forward to seeing what you accomplish in the future!

Do you know of a school that would be interested in participating in the 2016-2017 Trash Free Lunch Challenge? Grades of Green is looking for elementary and middle schools in the greater LA area who are motivated to reduce their lunchtime waste. For more information, please email Allie Bussjaeger, Programs and Outreach Manager at

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