PRIED Middle School Students Recognized for Recycling Efforts

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Students from the Program for Rigor and Innovation in Education (PRIED) earned second place honors in the Unless Contest sponsored by the Philadelphia Zoo.

Students from the Program for Rigor and Innovation in Education (PRIED) earned second place honors in the UNLESS contest, sponsored by the Philadelphia Zoo. The UNLESS contest is a project-based initiative for children, promoting action toward saving wildlife. The project engages more than 200 schools and over 10,000 students in the Delaware Valley. PRIED students received their award in front of a cheering zoo staff that thanked them for their efforts and impressive accomplishment. The award celebration was hosted by the Philadelphia Zoo on May 12, 2015.

PRIED’s students project focused on the recycling of clothing, shoes, and other household textiles. They campaigned within their school and amongst families within the community. In all they were able to collect over 1,600 pounds of materials! The students donated wearable clothing and shoes to organizations supporting individuals in need, and the unwearable materials were donated to a company that transforms the materials into base thread and playground flooring. Additionally, the PRIED students kept t-shirts they collected, converting them into reusable shopping bags; this in an effort to promote a decreased use of plastic bags which can harm sea turtles when the bags end up in the ocean. The t-shirt bags are being sold, further promoting the well-being of this endangered species, by raising money which will be donated to causes supporting sea turtles. PRIED students plan to put the money they won from the UNLESS contest toward a marine biology-based trip to Costa Rica, whereby they will volunteer at a coastal expeditionary camp to help sea turtles and their hatchlings.

About the Unless Contest

The UNLESS contest is sponsored by the Philadelphia Zoo. It focuses on students creating and implementing recycling campaigns in order to save energy, wildlife, and the environment. Students are asked to complete their projects without the help of teachers or adults. Students are responsible for creating and implementing the campaign as well as keeping both qualitative and quantitative data. Students are encourage to display the data in a creative way. For more information about the UNLESS contest, please visit,


PRIED is a new, independent middle school located in Wilmington, DE. PRIED aims to create a deeper learning experience for its students, implementing the latest advances in adolescent education It provides a rich learning environment through hands-on projects and myraids of expeditionary learning trips. Students who attend PRIED will leave as critical thinkers and engaged citizens.
For more information about PRIED, please visit


For more information please contact,

Mandy Reis, PRIED
4412 Washington Boulevard
Wilmington, DE 19802
Phone: (302) 635-0705

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Mandy Reis
PRIED Middle School
since: 12/2013
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