Piper Students Learn About Wastewater System

Published on May 06, 2024

A photograph of Water Pollution Control Director Jeff Miles speaking to 5th-grade students at Piper Elementary School about water quality and wastewater treatment

In an initiative to educate the younger generation about the importance of water conservation and water systems, Public Works’ Water Pollution Control (WPC) team joined a special event hosted by Piper Creek Elementary School late last month. The event saw the participation of 5th-grade students, who were treated to an in-depth exploration of the Unified Government’s (UG) wastewater treatment system and its critical role in protecting the physical environment and the community.

The event was organized by Stephanie Damron, a 5th-grade teacher at Piper Creek Elementary, along with seven other faculty members. Their collaboration with the UG’s WPC team highlights a shared commitment to environmental education and community involvement.

Jeff Miles, WPC Director, led the discussions, focusing on the various facets of the water cycle and the essential processes of water treatment that ensure public health and environmental safety. Highlighting the intricate workings of sanitary treatment, stormwater systems, and the impact of these services on water conservation efforts, Miles provided the students with a detailed understanding of how these systems operate within the community.

“Remember, every drop counts! As future leaders in our community, each of these great kids has the power to protect our planet’s most precious resource – water. Let’s make waves in conserving water and keeping our environment clean for generations,” Miles stated.

The students also learned about the complexities of the wastewater system, including its extensive network of pipes, pump stations, and treatment plants. This knowledge highlighted the technological and infrastructure systems that manage our water and underscored the importance of community engagement and personal responsibility toward water conservation.

“Thanks to Jeff's presentation, fifth graders learned where water goes after it's used in their homes and how it's cleaned. This information generated an overflow of student questions,” Damron said. “These students are using this information to solve problems within their own community. Many have developed a deep passion for water issues, the very ones that are currently impacting Kansans.”

Through this event, the UG’s WPC team demonstrated their ongoing commitment to environmental services, engaging the community, and empowering students with the knowledge and motivation to play an active role in environmental stewardship.