• Eric Eckl

15,000 sign the Great Schools Clean Streams pledge to keep New Castle County’s environment clean

New Castle, DE – New Castle County Executive Matt Meyer today announced the winners of this year’s Great Schools Clean Streams environmental education campaign, which last month enlisted area residents to raise awareness of the environmental harm from pouring kitchen grease and oils down the drain and into the County’s wastewater treatment system.

“The results are in, and a record 15,078 people signed the pledge to keep New Castle County’s environment clean in 2018,” County Executive Meyer said. “Thanks to St. Peter and Forest Oak, we will have great schools and clean streams for all of the county’s folk. And remember, if you have any grease to toss, follow the example of Olive B. Loss!”

Residents participated in the Great Schools Clean Streams campaign by signing an online pledge at to properly dispose of used cooking grease and throw it in the trash. Each participant assigned their pledge to the public, charter, or private school of their choice in New Castle County and the schools that collected the most pledges won cash awards they can use to purchase classroom materials and to support school projects. Nine schools from three categories - schools with fewer than 200 students, 200-599 students, and 600 or more students – won cash awards and all schools with 50 or more pledges were entered into a wild card drawing for one of ten $250 awards.

The 15,078 total pledges made in 2018 is up 250% from 2017 (6,021) and up 188% from the previous record registered during the 2016 pledge drive (8,014).

The 2018 Great Schools Clean Streams campaign was part of New Castle County’s commemoration of Earth Month, which included collaborations with local non-profits to offer a variety of opportunities for residents to get outdoors to and enjoy the scenic beauty of the natural environment while contributing to efforts to keep parks and watershed clean.

2018 Great Schools Clean Streams Winners

Schools 600+ students

  • First Place ($1,250 award): Olive B. Loss Elementary School – 1707 pledges

  • Second Place ($750 award): Odyssey Charter School – 1621 pledges

  • Third Place ($500 award): MOT Charter School – 765 pledges

Schools 200-599 students

  • First Place ($1,250 award): Forest Oak Elementary School – 1885 pledges

  • Second Place ($750 award): St. Elizabeth School – 1620 pledges

  • Third Place ($500 award): Christ The Teacher Catholic School – 1206 pledges

Schools with fewer than 200 students

  • First Place ($1250 award): Saint Peter Catholic School – 183 pledges

  • Second Place ($750 award): St. Peter's Cathedral School – 95 pledges

  • Third Place ($500 award): Albert Einstein Academy – 63 pledges

10 Schools with 50+ pledges chosen at random for $250 Wild Card Prize

  • The Tatnall School

  • Evan G. Shortlidge Elementary School

  • Las Americas ASPIRA Academy

  • Newark Charter School

  • William F. Cooke Elementary School

  • Carrcroft Elementary School

  • Maple Lane Elementary School

  • Caravel Academy

  • Tower Hill School

  • Newark High School

New Castle County’s Department of Special Services maintains the state’s largest wastewater treatment system with more than 1,700 miles of sanitary sewer lines that serve 118,000 customers and takes in more than 50 millions of gallons each day. Cooking grease and oils poured down the drain build up in that system over time and are a leading cause of sewer blockages, backups and spills which harm the environment and create significant cleanup costs. Through more effective monitoring, regular cleaning and public education county government has cut the number of backups and overflows since 2005 by two-thirds. Reduced overflows makes a difference in environmental quality and saves taxpayers money and that’s why county government sponsors this annual education campaign as part of its investment in a more efficient and effective wastewater treatment system.


Contact: Jason Miller, Director of Communications, 302-545-1462


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Great Schools, Clean Streams is a public awareness campaign to educate residents of New Castle County, Delaware about how clean waterways can start in their own kitchens. Residents who pledge to keep fats, oil, and grease out of the sewer system can help their preferred county school win cash prizes. 


T: (302) 395-5707


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