Trex Recycling Challenge News Release



For more information, contact:


St. Francis Xavier Elementary – Marquette Campus

Laura Barnett, Principal



St. Francis Xavier Elementary – Marquette Campus Wins Picnic Bench through Regional Recycling Contest, Places 10th Nationally


APPLETON, Wis., (Wednesday, May 23, 2018)—On Earth Day, April 22, St. Francis Xavier Elementary – Marquette Campus won the Trex Plastic Film Recycling Challenge of the Great Plains Region, consisting of schools of its size in Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, Michigan, Minnesota, and throughout Wisconsin, and took 10th place across the nation. The prize – a new Trex bench made out of recycled plastic – was delivered to the school May 2. 


The Marquette Campus and its adjoining Catholic Church, St. Pius X, collected 2,929 pounds of plastic film and bags for the contest that began on America Recycles Day, November 15, 2017, and finished April 15. Pre-K teacher, Kara Jacobson, researched the challenge for this academic year, registered the school to participate and managed the process including monthly weigh-ins and tracking. 


I borrowed a hanging scale from a local hardware store and used it at our school to weigh the bags on a daily basis,” explains Jacobson, who monitored and managed the school’s participation. “Then, I would gather the bags into my vehicle – sometimes borrowing staff members’ minivans – and take them to the local grocery store that was collecting the film and bags for the recycling challenge.” Jacobson adds, “The holidays were an especially busy time for bag donations during which, on one occasion, we had 80 pounds of recycled plastic!”


The families and staff of the St. Francis Xavier Elementary community and its 278 students contributed enough recycled plastic film and bags to place 10th nationwide out of 607 participating schools. The next highest contributor in the Great Plains region and in the same size category collected 1,468 pounds. 


We are proud of the way our school and parish communities pitched in to make this contest successful,” says St. Francis Xavier Elementary principal, Laura Barnett. “It is amazing that a school our size not only won this competition, but did so in such an impressive fashion – bringing in 1,000 pounds more than the school in second place!” Barnett adds, “The bench we received – located in our entryway – is a great way to teach our students the importance of reusing and recycling and serves as a reminder that even small acts, when combined together with the efforts of others, can make a big difference in this world.”


About the Trex Plastic Film Recycling Challenge

The Trex Plastic Film Recycling Challengeencourages K-12 students to compete against one another to see who can collect and recycle the most polyethylene plastic. The winning schools receive beautiful Trex products and the gratification that comes with going green. Easy-to-implement for schools of any level and size, the program comes complete with detailed instructions, promotional materials, recycling bins and a list of qualifying recyclable materials.


Trex Company is the world’s largest manufacturer of high performance wood-alternative decking and railing, with more than 25 years of product experience. Stocked in more than 6,700 retail locations worldwide, Trex outdoor living products offer a wide range of style options with fewer ongoing maintenance requirements than wood, as well as a truly environmentally responsible choice.  For more information, visit  


About St. Francis Xavier Elementary – Marquette Campus

St. Francis Xavier Catholic School System is a co-educational, fully accredited Catholic school community comprised of nearly 1,500 students serving grades PreK through 12, including St. Francis Xavier High School, St. Francis Xavier Middle School, and St. Francis Xavier Elementary School at two locations. With new, state-of-the-art facilities, small class sizes and a curriculum consistent with current trends, we offer the highest quality faith-based education while stressing the importance of partnering awareness with moral and social responsibility. For more information, visit

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