As many of you know, there was a social media posting shared yesterday from the Michigan Duck Rescue and Sanctuary in Salem Township. The post was based on an unannounced visit to Edsel Ford by the MDRS and Dearborn Animal Control back in October of 2018, after an alleged call from inside our high school.
After reading the original post and the comments that followed, I immediately called my contact at MDRS and asked why he waited five months to post the hyperbolic story. His answer was, “MDRS does this to attract attention and they do play on the emotions of people for that attention.” The truth of the matter is that Edsel Ford has worked with SRO Krakowski, MDRS and Dearborn City Animal Control for assistance to ensure all of our courtyard animals receive the proper care – before and since the October visit.
Edsel Ford has also formed a teacher-led committee currently working on several proposals to transform the courtyard into either an outdoor classroom, meditation space or gathering place. These proposals may or may not include harboring wildlife. Prior to forming the committee, the staff agreed all options must include a specific plan to provide food and adequate year-round shelter for the courtyard animals. The plan we adopt must be funded and sustainable and ultimately approved in collaboration with MDRS and Dearborn Animal Control’s guidance and expertise.
The assertion in the MDRS post that “someone tosses food out, and even straw, usually not at all what is even closely recommended for sustained health and survival, does not mean that they are not neglected” is grossly inappropriate when it comes to the care given by the staff member who has single-handedly fed, sheltered and organized fundraisers for these animals. He has gone above and beyond on a daily basis even during breaks and summer vacations when it comes to the courtyards and the animals.
While we value the importance of tradition and history at Edsel Ford, we have been and continue to be committed to the courtyards and our plan moving forward. The animals safety and care is of the utmost concern for all involved.
Again, I did call and speak with the contact person at MDRS yesterday and addressed the timing of the post and other mischaracterizations. He agreed with some points and deleted posts after I clarified some things he already knew to be false. We cannot control the comments left on the post but I would point out many of them came from people who have never been to Edsel Ford or have not been here in a very long time.
For those of you who have recently visited, I would ask you to reflect on the inside of Edsel Ford – the cleanliness, the mural, the history – and understand we place the same emphasis on the outside, including our courtyards with living creatures. I would wager that no school in Dearborn Public Schools has been visited more than Edsel Ford in the last five or six years by hundreds, if not thousands of visitors, and not once has anyone raised a concern regarding the animals. In fact, they have stopped and admired them and celebrated them as do we every day.
It disappoints me that many of the wonderful staff and students at Edsel Ford have gotten dragged into this situation when we thought we were working with a true partner who equally cared for animals and people.
Mr. Scott Casebolt
Principal-Edsel Ford High School