Tag Archives: Green

Benefits of Paperless Education

2 Mar

One of the main concerns that face schools nowadays is financing. Another concern that people have is how to stay green. If schools change to paperless education and paperless classrooms, both of those issues could be resolved. This  is how…

Financial Positives

Jake Tschida

Teachers are constantly using, and potentially wasting, thousands of sheets of paper a week. If a teacher has to pay for all of this paper, and also the prices of copying, they can see each pay check go straight down the drain. The average student every year uses 360  pounds of paper. Each pound of paper is approximately 100 sheets. This means that, with simple math, each student uses 36,000 sheets of paper a year. Now, if you use more math (of the complicated variety), you can see that a ream of paper goes for about $8/500 sheets (with tax). 36,000/500 = 72 reams x $8 = $576/student per year. Take the size of my graduation class, 861, my school spent $495,936 on just paper.

A teacher in Kentucky has found the answer to all of this spending, she created the paperless classroom. In this classroom the students are all given pda’s (personal digital assistants). The students then use these pda’s to do their homework, take their tests, and download all of their study materials. Education world interviewed Stephanie Sorell to find out more about the benefits of going paperless. So, the real question is, what is holding schools back from trying more paperless education classrooms?

Environmental Impact

Chad Willson

Just one classroom going paperless can have a huge impact on the environment. Using the math from above the average classroom of 30 uses 1,080,000 sheets of paper every year, one tree produces only 8,500 sheets of paper, so it takes 128 trees to produce enough paper for one classroom. Just one class has the power to save 128 trees by making the decision to go paperless.

Also according to Paperless Productivity turning one tree into paper releases 110 lbs of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, additionally trees convert over 2,000 lbs of carbon dioxide in their lifetime. Going paperless would have a huge and positive impact on carbon dioxide emissions.

Some may think it is too hard, or too much work, or costs too much to turn a classroom into a paperless education portal; but every year more and more schools have found a way to begin the transition. District 97 in Illinois has over 8 elementary schools on track to be paperless. For more in depth info on what steps need to be taken and what the future has in store check out David Wees’s and Kelley Tenkley’s blogs.

Also check out this video of an agriculture teacher in De Soto, Wisconsin that has successfully gone totally paperless.