Vandalism includes human feces at PO school

There are questions one never wants to need to ask when entering a school building, questions like, “What is that brown stuff caked on the door?”

“BTW, that isn’t chocolate,” was the answer office coordinator Shiela Granado chose to use when sharing her frustrations about multiple vandalism incidents at Discovery High School in Port Orchard over the past few months.

At least three such incidents have occurred since September, the first of which was described as particularly bad. Feces “was all over our front door, all over every single door on campus and on the knobs. If it hadn’t been cleaned up, and I came to open up, I would have stuck my hand right in it. I wouldn’t have thought to watch out for that.”

The latest incident is what took Granado to social media, a Dec. 26 Facebook post showing an image of the school’s office entrance with the glass door covered in the brown substance she later said was believed to be human feces. The post immediately picked up traction in Port Orchard, commenters expressing their disgust.

Mayor Rob Putaansuu, when shown the post, was also unable to hold back his distaste. “It’s a horrible situation, and the first I’ve heard about it,” he said. “Hopefully law enforcement is looking into that and can find out who is doing it and address it.”

The post celebrated the efforts of Daniel Phipps, a custodian that Granado said has gone beyond the call of duty to ensure a safer environment for staff and students. “Danny had it all cleaned up before we ever got here,” she said about the first incident. “Everything had been sprayed off, and when I asked why, he said, ‘You should have seen it an hour ago.’”

Granado said the school is stuck between a rock and a hard place. “We have an SRO (school resource officer), and we have visits from local police that come by and check, but it’s pretty hit or miss.”

Efforts to catch the vandal(s) are also affected by the lack of cameras on campus, an issue that Granado said is easier said than done. “It’s not that (South Kitsap School District) doesn’t want to take care of us. It’s that we don’t have the funds,” she said. “It’s frustrating to come to school, to know how much our kids love this place and to see that on our school breaks my heart.”

The Discovery campus is considered among the worst-conditioned schools in the district and was one of the sites slated for major replacement efforts in the district’s proposed $271 million bond measure this past year. Votes in favor once again fell short of the 60% supermajority mark in November.

SKSD has not replied to a request for comment.