Return to Headlines

Trever Covington: Inspired Leading at Heritage Elementary

Trever Covington: Inspired Leading at Heritage Elementary

Trever Covington is in Ms. Martin’s class at Heritage Elementary and stepped forward as a leader at Heritage Elementary when he wrote a letter to the principal, Ms. JJ Black, asking to start a recycling program in the classrooms.

“What inspired me was, I play football, and at practice one day there was trash everywhere and I thought, I could be the one to change that. I asked myself, ‘What can I do at my school?’”

Ms. Black encouraged him to put together a plan and to think through the logistics.

“Something I’m really proud of is that I spent a month on it.  I used my personal time to work on the plan,” said Trever. “After I wrote the letter to Ms. Black, it was nerve wracking waiting because I put so much time and thought into it and I was worried she’d say no.  This is something I am passionate about.”

“I went home and sat around with my dogs and thought about it.  I thought I could use boxes that cafeteria food comes in to collect the recycling.  I labeled those boxes and put them in twenty homeroom classrooms.”

One of the Ms. Black’s requests was for Trever to inform the Heritage teachers of his recycling plans. He wrote a letter to the teachers explaining the process. He attended a staff meeting to speak to the teachers as well.  

“I was nervous speaking in front of the teachers in one big room with all the eyes on me. I did pretty good.”

Ms. Black bragged, “I am so proud of the initiative Trever has shown throughout this project.  Even when he was sent back to the drawing board to iron out details and overcome obstacles, he persevered and met his goal!  Now our entire school is making his dream a reality!”

Trever said his teachers were supportive and that his fourth grade teacher, Ms. Eve (Cinnamon) Brand, was encouraging and motivated him the most.  “It was like an old friend telling you, you could do it!”

Trever said, “I’m independent.  The thrilling part of the project was being able to accomplish something on my own.”

Because of Trever, Thursday is recycling day at Heritage. They recycle paper and cardboard.  He brings it to a special bin just outside of his classroom where the custodians help him take it to the large recycling bin.

Trever also likes the chance to educate others about the need to recycle.

“I had to choose my speech and words for the younger kids so they’d understand the process.  I had to build their comprehension and background knowledge.”

“One of the exciting things about Thursdays is getting to go down to the Kindergarten and First Grade classrooms.  They hear me coming and are waiting to give me their recycling.”

Trever gives credit to his teachers who helped lead him through the project and who believed in him.  “Ms. Martin helped a lot by printing the labels and she gave me the time I needed to work on the project.”

Ms. Martin added, "Trever is a true leader in our classroom; he is constantly coming up with great ideas and ways to motivate others.  When Trever asked me for his help in this program, I wanted to make sure he didn't miss a second of class time, as we were approaching the end of the year, but he put his education first and any spare time he had was devoted to the recycling project. We are so excited that he is making such a positive change for our world, starting here at Heritage!"

Trever also  recalls the words of his great - grandma as he works toward his goal of keeping the earth clean.  “My great grandma used to say, ‘dreams lead to success and success leads to the rest of your life.’ I keep her words in my heart.”

Trever was a little concerned that KPREP testing is causing a delay in his recycling schedule this week.  They have to wait until Friday. “But I’m okay doing it during recess time if people are finished testing.”

Trever plays football for East Middle School. He looks forward to practicing for next year. Trever also enjoys writing a different story each night for teacher Mr. Shaver to read and give feedback.

His goal it to find someone to continue the program when he leaves Heritage. “I want to promote someone to continue the recycling program, and I’m working on beginning a similar project at East Middle School.”

A project that began as an idea, blossomed into a learning experience with writing, speaking, collaborating and organizing.  Thanks Trever!