Local residents met with Woodbrook Elementary School principal Dr. William Sterrett Tuesday to discuss issues relating to the new track and its connection to the existing trail system.
“The track has now entrances into the park, it’s “hello” come to my back yard,” said Woodbrook resident Audrey Kocher whose concern for increased criminal activity in her back yard was reported earlier by this blog. By school policy, use of the trail after dark is not permitted. “Our school grounds may be used by the community except for when it’s dark or during school hours. Any time that there is a violation of that, that is what it is, a violation, and should be reported to authorities,” said principal Sterrett. When asked directly if they believed that the track would increase local property crime, residents agreed that there was no conclusive evidence to support this theory.
Dr. Sterrett went on to suggest that the school hold an annual grounds meeting with local residents. “You bring, as a resident, a perspective that I may not have as principal,” he said.
According to Sterrett, UVA’s Day of Caring project will clear “dead stuff” including brush piles from around the track area. The idea of additional lighting around the track was briefly considered but then rejected as it might actually increase after-hours grounds use and be hard to monitor. Dr. Sterrett also suggested the possibility of posting a sign next to the trail area similar to that on the front grounds. He went on to say that he would request that Albemarle County Police provide additional evening patrols.
Following the meeting Dr. Sterrett took attendees on a tour of the Woodbrook Learning Garden, track and trail area.
Dr. Sterrett reported that approximately 50 children from the Woodbrook neighborhood attend the school, 35 or so of those arriving on foot.