Pennsylvania Speaker of the House Keith R. McCall (D-Carbon) announced Wednesday that the Panther Valley School District will receive a $3,000 state grant to expand recycling and recycling education in its schools.

"Pennsylvania's focus on environmental education has prepared our students to be more environmentally conscious," McCall said.

The grant will be given as part of the Environmental Education Grant Program administered through the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. Since the program's inception in 1993, more than $6 million in grants have been awarded to school districts throughout Pennsylvania.

Panther Valley officials plan to use the grant to expand the district's recycling program, develop educational recycling lessons for student peer teaching, establish a recycling and environmental curriculum for classroom instruction and increase recycling awareness.

When announcing the grant, McCall also stressed the economic importance that an increased environmental awareness can bring to the area.

"The recycling industry employs more than 80,000 people in Pennsylvania and generates an estimated $305 million annually in tax revenue for the Commonwealth," he said.

For more information on Pennsylvania's commitment to recycling, visit the Department of Environmental Protection's website at www.depweb.state.pa.us [1].