School Legislation and California Education Code

AB75 — 1999

AB75 requires state agencies, including community colleges and state universities to develop and adopt an integrated waste management plan to divert at least 25% of the solid waste disposal by January 1, 2002. Plans are submitted to the state. More info

SB373 — 2001

The School Diversion and Environmental Education Law required the State Board to evaluate the implementation of school waste reduction programs in the state's schools and encourages the school districts to coordinate with local government to implement solid waste management programs to maximize the diversion of solid waste from landfill disposal. This bill also initiated the inclusion of environmental concepts into the California State Science Framework and requires the Division of the State Architect to provide a list of recycled and environmentally preferred products that can be used in the construction and modernization of California schools. More info

AB1548 — 2003

The Education and Environment Initiative directs the California Environmental Protection Agency and CalRecycle, in cooperation with the Resources Agency, State Department of Education, State Board of Education, and Secretary for Education to:

  • Develop education principles and concepts for the environment for elementary and secondary schools.
  • Ensure that the education principles and concepts for the environment are aligned to the academic content standards adopted by the State Board of Education and do not duplicate or conflict with any academic content standards.
  • Incorporate education principles for the environment in criteria developed for textbook adoption in Science, History/Social Sciences, Mathematics and English/Language Arts.
  • Develop and disseminate a "model curriculum" to teach the environmental principles and concepts.

More info

AB 1535 — 2006

The State Department of Education is making grants and technical assistance available to school districts, charter schools, and county offices of education for school instructional gardens. The grants have a maximum limit of $2,500 for school sites with an enrollment under 1,000 pupils or a maximum limit of $5,000 with an enrollment of 1,000 or more pupils. More info

Resources and Information for schools

The CalRecycle website has a section on schools that covers waste management, energy, water and air as well as information on environmental education.
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Helpful Sections of the California Education Code

Section 33541
(a) The State Board of Education and the department shall revise, as necessary, the framework in science to include the necessary elements to teach environmental education, including, but not limited to, all of the following topics:

  1. Waste management.
  2. Energy conservation.
  3. Water conservation and pollution prevention.
  4. Air resources.
  5. Integrated pest management.
  6. Toxic materials.
  7. Wildlife conservation and forestry.

(b) ...
Section 32372.
(a) Each school district may, and is encouraged to establish and maintain a paper recycling program in all classrooms, administrative offices, and other areas owned or leased by the school district where significant quantity of waste paper is generated or may be collected. (b) ...

Section 32373.
(a) Each educational agency is encouraged to purchase recycled paper if the supplier of recycled paper offers the paper at a cost, which does not exceed by more than 5 percent of the lowest offer of nonrecycled paper of comparable quality.

(b) Whenever an educational agency purchases recycled paper, the educational agency shall purchase the paper with the highest percentage of postconsumer waste, if the price and quality of the recycled paper are otherwise equal.

(c) Whenever it is practical to do so, each educational agency shall revise its procurement specifications to eliminate discrimination against recycled paper and to give preference to the purchase of recycled paper.

(d) Each educational agency shall make all reasonable efforts to eliminate the purchase of paper and paper products which are deemed potential contaminants of the educational agency's paper recycling program.


The California State Education Code can be found at the California Law website.