Students pick up 16,000 bags of trash in spruce up efforts

Students pick up 16,000 bags of trash in spruce up efforts Results from Gov. Bill Janklow's first Students' Spruce Up South Dakota Day continue to come in, but by any measure, the event was a success. Nearly 60,000 students from 244 schools participated.

The most popular activity for students was picking up trash and litter, and reports so far show over 16,000 bags were collected from school grounds, athletic fields, parks, public buildings, road ditches, and communities. Besides bags, students filled pickups, trailers, dump trucks, and tractor-trailers with trash, tree limbs, and other debris.

Janklow proclaimed May 3 as the first Student's Spruce Up South Dakota Day and invited all schools to participate. Schools could pick their projects and complete those projects on a different day if they had conflicts with May 3.

"Having 60,000 students help Spruce Up South Dakota has made a difference," said Janklow.

Teachers and administrators agree. Some of the comments received include:

* "What a great opportunity to get students involved with community service!" � Bonnie Wehausen, Aberdeen Central High.

* "The students worked very hard and had a great time." � Susie Oligmueller, Miller High School.

* "The student's excitement was so incredible." � Heidi McGuire, Gertie Belle Rogers School, Mitchell.

* "This was a great cooperative activity between students, staff, Department of Highways, and the city." � Bryce Knudson, Newell School District.

* "Many people felt good about having a chance to make a difference." � Bruce Mogen, Dell Rapids Middle School.

* "All the students and teachers had a mission to complete in a certain time frame and no matter which project I visited, the determination and team work displayed was outstanding." � Lynda Luymens, Wessington Springs Area Development Corporation

* "A fun but tiring morning." � Brian Naasz, Winner Middle School.

* "Community saw us doing this � good comments from them." Betty Schlueter, Redfield Elementary.

* "Our corner at 41st and Kiwanis was sparkling, and there was a phenomenal spirit of community and satisfaction with a job well done." � Eric Sammons, O'Gorman High School.

* "This was a great project to Spruce Up our school, community, and state." � Luther Schumacher, Aberdeen Public School.

Some schools made the Students' Spruce Up Day a school project. For example, under the guidance of Donneley Kay, the Warner Elementary and Middle School Student Council planned their entire event. The students drew sectional maps of Warner for each grade in K-8 to cover, determined categories of trash to be sorted, assigned people to be photographers to document the cleanup, an assigned other people to sort and weigh the trash. Finally, they set rules for collection and instructed each class in the collection procedure. The final result was 182 pounds of trash collected, sorted and weighed, and a final report that was sent to Gov. Janklow.

Other schools tied the Student's Spruce Up Day to other school and community clean up efforts. For example, some wrote:

* "The Student's Spruce Up South Day joins very well with the Rapid City Clean Up Day." � Sam Zimiga, Pinedale Elementary, Rapid City.

* "We integrated this with our Mother Day "Maka Ampeatu unci".

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