School Zone Recycles in Tons, Saves Paper by Inches


GRAND HAVEN, Mich. — School Zone Publishing has sold more than 300 million educational workbooks, flash cards, software, games and puzzles, while helping countless children across the globe learn to read, write, count and master other essential skills.

The Grand Haven, Michigan-based company turns tons of learning into tons of recycling. Literally. School Zone recycles between 3.5 and 4.2 tons of cardboard each month—or close to 48 tons annually. That’s approximately the equivalent of 16 full-size SUVs, depending on the model.

Even before that point, much of the cardboard has lived a long and extremely productive life. After receiving new inventory from printing houses and unpacking it, School Zone returns the heavy-duty cartons to printers for re-using as many as 10-15 times.

Jonathan Hoffman, president and CEO of School Zone, said, “Our family-owned company has a long tradition of making the most of resources. It’s good for the planet, and it’s good for business.”

Two years ago the company also switched from using 60-pound to 50-pound paper stock for its workbooks, reducing fiber content and subsequently, its use, by 17%. In addition, now when it’s time to reprint a title, School Zone moves to a 7 1/2” X 10 5/8 trim size vs. 8 ½” X 11”. The subtle size change requires no sacrificing of content yet uses 8% less paper.

The company also combines customer utility with resource efficiency. For example, School Zone strives to keep prices affordable for young families, including designing products that work hard. That includes flash cards often doubling as games, game card sets that can be used and played multiple ways, and many workbooks with tear-out pages for use as individual worksheets.

“We strive for great products, satisfied customers, and attention to every detail, including resource-maximization,” Hoffman said. He added, “It’s been our vision for almost 40 years.”

For more information on all School Zone Publishing products, please visit To schedule an interview with School Zone Publishing’s CEO Jonathan Hoffman, please contact School Zone at

School Zone Publishing has been producing children’s educational products for more than 30 years. Founded in 1979 by educators, this family-run company is a trusted source for workbooks, flash cards, and educational software. Heralded by parents and teachers as the best educational material, School Zone leads the industry in quality content at affordable prices.