Following repeated “poop problem” incidents on their grass field, a grade-three class from South Park Elementary took matters into their own hands and wrote to Delta’s mayor and council to ask for help.
And, by “poop problem”, they’re referring to the endless amounts of dog poop getting left behind on their field, which proceeds to gets stepped in, slipped on and tracked into the school and its classrooms.
“We would like help getting dog poop bag dispensers near entrances to our school yard. We love sharing our school yard with the community and their dogs, but poop often gets left on the ground ... In the past, posters have been made and put up to remind people to pick up the poop, but it doesn’t work for long,” reads one of the letters.
Teacher Yvette Kruckenberg says her class was motivated to take action after two days in a row of dog poop winding up in their classroom.
So, when one of the main solutions from the group’s solution brainstorm was asking mayor and council for dog poop dispensers at the different entrances to the field, Kruckenberg helped her students write their business-style letters and dropped them off at City Hall.
“I want to empower them, and I want them to feel like they have a voice,” she says.
The letters and map of proposed dispenser locations was circulated to council members before their Jan. 10 council meeting, but council did not offer up any discussion.
Delta staff did, however, respond in the agenda’s external correspondence summary, saying that city staff would work with the Delta School District to put up more signage encouraging community members to use nearby Dennison Park instead of the school field.
“Staff would not recommend placing dog waste dispensers at the school site as it may encourage further use by dog owners,” the Delta staff response reads.
Kruckenberg says the class will keep their eyes out for any improvement after signage gets put up – though it hasn’t necessarily deterred folks from leaving behind their dog poop in the past – and adds that they may be writing to council again if the situation hasn’t changed by June.