by Lisa Tome
There's a big box full of expensive clothing sitting at Chesapeake City Elementary School.
That box has left school staffers lead secretary Elizabeth Brock, and 10-month secretary Linda Wolf confused. They can't figure why items that are lost, go unclaimed despite their efforts.
"They leave them on the playground," said Wolf.
The staff makes an effort to reunite students with their lost items. When there are assemblies or other events which bring parents to school, they make a big push to display items which they hope will be claimed.
But still, the lost and found pile grows larger.
Lost and found isn't an end of the school year problem.
"It starts the first week," said the two women.
"We do make an effort. It's all year round. But the very first day of school it starts," said Brock.
The women said the problem has gotten worse over the years.
"It had gotten worse. I don't think parents have time to keep track of stuff. They can't make it back here (before secretaries leave the building)," said Brock.
"We never get phone calls with parents looking for stuff. It amazes us and we talk about it a lot. Every time we look at it (lost and found pile) we're amazed," said Wolf.
The women are both mothers. So they know how much it costs to outfit a child.
Under Armour, The North Face, Nike, Reebok, and a laundry list of expensive items are inside that box.
Clothing is also left behind in classrooms. You'd think it would be easy to find out to whom a sweatshirt belongs if there are 20 or so children, but even then reuniting an owner with his/her clothing is a challenge.
School children aren't the only ones who lose items at the school.
"We find stuff on the playground after football practice. Parents leave things there and there is no way to contact them," said Brock.
An expensive camcorder was found left behind at fifth grade graduation. That was claimed.
The unclaimed items will be donated to Goodwill. Wolf said that those at Fair Hill Nature Center have also asked for donations of lost and found items this year. Students go to the center unprepared for weather and those hoodies and such could be used there.