University of Kentucky
Kentucky recycling

Profiles July 2021

July 1, 2021
Student recycling at University of Kentucky; arming teachers in Ohio

Treasure, not trash

The University of Kentucky’s Recycling Program collected 7.3 tons of material in May as part of the Spring Move-Out program on the Lexington campus.

The university established the program to encourage students to donate rather than throw out usable items as they depart campus housing for summer break.

“We are so proud of the students who took the opportunity to donate reusable items and nonperishable food, diverting them away from the landfill. We are so glad that our donation efforts can support local charities/groups,” said Esther Moberly, manager of the UK Waste, Recycling and Trucking Department. “This program is part of a large campuswide effort to decrease how much is thrown away, which is a goal in the university’s Strategic Sustainability Plan."

"Give & Go" donation stations were placed in the lobby of every residence hall on campus. Students were encouraged to donate usable items, such as clothes, shoes, bedding, unused toiletries, school supplies, decor and nonperishable food.

The Give and Go Donation Station program is a collaboration among several university departments and local organizations — Recycling, Trucking, Residence Life, Campus Housing, Auxiliary Services, Sustainability, Big Blue Pantry and Goodwill Industries of the Bluegrass.

The Spring Move-Out program was suspended in 2020 in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, and the university was unsure how students would respond this year. In 2019, student donations exceeded 9 tons.

Teachers need extensive training to carry firearms on duty, Ohio court rules

Ohio school teachers and staff cannot carry firearms on duty without extensive police training or 20 years of experience, the Ohio Supreme Court has ruled.

The Cincinnati Enquirer says the court’s 4-3 decision struck down a policy enacted by the Madison Local School District that allowed up to 10 employees with concealed handgun licenses and training to carry weapons while in school.

The policy was put into place after four students were injured in a 2016 shooting at Madison Junior-Senior High School. Shortly after, a group of parents challenged the Butler County school district's policy in court.

Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor wrote that the district's policy violated Ohio law that "prohibits a school from employing a person who goes armed while on duty in his or her job unless the employee has satisfactorily completed an approved basic peace-officer-training program or has 20 years of experience as a peace officer.”

Erin Gabbard, one of the parents who challenged the district policy, said she was relieved by the court decision.

“Like any parents, we just want our kids to be safe,” Gabbard said in an Everytown for Gun Safety news release. “The Madison school board armed minimally trained staff, one of whom even failed the accuracy test multiple times. Once this ruling is implemented, parents will at least know that the teachers who carry firearms in our schools are properly trained, as required by state law.”

Dissenting justices maintained that teachers and school staff did not need extensive police training.

"Had the General Assembly intended to condition the authority to carry a firearm in a school safety zone on having the basic police training required of peace officers, it could have written the statute that way," Justice Sharon Kennedy wrote. "It did not."

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