YRB staff recently visited Brent Kennedy Elementary. Back row, from left: Greg McNeil, Carolyn McTaggart, Gage Wourms, Cole Scown, Mason Nazaroff, Henry Pommier, Beau Black, Kailee McCasky, Ruby Kelly, Aurora Smith, Hart Starbuck, Sabrina White, Mark Klan, Paul Anderson, Front from left: Jonathan Venema, Charlie Ludwar, Seth Robertson, Daphne Hlookoff, Jaden Noble, Hunter Makaroff, Charlie Makaroff, Polly Makaroff and Yarbee the mascot (Hayden Schmitz). Photo submitted​

Highways contractor talks safety at Brent Kennedy school

A student question about old highway signs led to the visit


Sometimes a casual conversation can lead to big things. While travelling with his class to swimming lessons, student Beau Black started a conversation with Carolyn McTaggart about the road signs they were passing by.

Black is an avid collector of signs, license plates, and other things shiny and metal. McTaggart is an education assistant at Brent Kennedy Elementary in South Slocan who is gifted in being able to connect the creative passions in kids to their learning. Black wondered aloud how he might acquire a highway sign to add to his collection. This led to a whole conversation about what happens to old signs when it is time to retire them.

Black and McTaggart took to the internet and reached out to the Ministry of Highways who connected them to Yellowhead Road and Bridge (YRB). To Black’s delight, they came up with not one but five road signs. At that point it turned into a wonderful class project.

The students learned all about highway signs and road safety. The best part was when YRB mascot Yarbee came with operations manager Greg McNeil and general manager Paul Anderson to deliver the signs and give a presentation about their jobs and answer student questions about highway maintenance and safety. Black shared his knowledge and accepted the signs donated by the YRB staff.

The children were grateful and excited to also receive their own safety reflector wrist band.

“We can’t fully express our appreciation for the incredible generosity that led from a simple question and inquiry by Beau and Carolyn,” said teacher Lorraine Malakoff.

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