Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

School staff faces action over moose-dropping incident

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SCHOOL staff on a canoe trip where students from Grand Marais were tricked into chewing moose droppings will face disciplinary action, Lord Selkirk School Division trustees ruled Tuesday evening.

"We held an in-camera meeting and the board received my report on the Walter Whyte School trip and the board passed a motion that the disciplinary actions in the report be approved," Lord Selkirk superintendent Scott Kwasnitza said.

Just what form that disciplinary action could take, the superintendent couldn't say.

"It's a personnel matter and personnel matters are private. They're discussed in-camera," Kwasnitza said.

School division trustees heard allegations Tuesday night that Grade 8 students were tricked into chewing on moose droppings on a school canoe trip. The Manitoba Teachers Society is expected to be ready today to comment on a range of disciplinary actions available to school divisions in personnel matters.

The incident occurred May 25, when about two dozen students were on an annual two-day canoe trip.

Some of the children later told parents one of the adult chaperones, but not a teacher or school official, tricked two kids into putting the round, sandy brown nuggets into their mouths.

That chaperone had pocketed the droppings on a hike some kids went on while others stayed at camp.

The kids on the hike were told the distinctive pellets would be used to play an unspecified joke on the other kids. They watched and laughed at the kids tricked into chewing the pellets.

One of the students who was tricked had braces on her teeth and the muck stuck to them. The kids who put the droppings in their mouths had been told they were a nutritious mixture of grass and berries.

The incident outraged parents when the story came out.

The canoe trip included the school's principal, a teacher and other adult chaperones.

The superintendent investigated the incident and compiled his findings along with recommendations on disciplinary action, which trustees adopted Tuesday.

alexandra.paul@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition June 6, 2012 A4

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