Education column: Students deserve thank you for giving, caring

By Penny Bailey: Clovis Municipal Schools

Since Valentines Day is Sunday, and that is the day we set aside to let those we love and appreciate know we care, I thought I’d share the following letter of appreciation our students at Mesa Elementary School received after they sent letters and care packages to our troops for the Christmas holiday:

“I’m writing on behalf of the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Civilians living in Afghanistan. We received a nice batch of hand-made letters from 4th graders at your school today, and I can tell you that we appreciated receiving them. We distributed the letters to places around the base where we congregate so everyone can enjoy them. Receiving letters from people back home passes the time here and connects us with those we are serving. Please pass along a heartfelt thank you to the children who wrote the letters.

Thank you again.

Tony M. Wickman, Capt. USAF”

Certainly, the writing of letters to the troops was a good lesson in not only English and spelling classes but also a good lesson in life as it just makes you happy when you encourage others.

And, in this same light, Mesa Elementary School put together a program called “Hearts for Haitian Children”.

The students purchased a paper heart for a dollar that said, “I’m helping the Haitian Children!”

They either wore the heart, or put them on the walls throughout the building. The money they collected will be given to the Red Cross.

Also, some of our other schools collected hard candy and wrote cards to our troops in the Middle East for Valentines Day.

I know it makes me happy when someone tells me ‘thank you.’ It might be only two little words, or a letter like Capt Wickman wrote to our students, but it can make a world of difference to someone when you let them know they are appreciated.

So, I want to say “thank you” to you for your encouragement and support of our teachers and staff at Clovis Municipal Schools.

I know they love their work, and they do great things for our students. But, all their hard work would never be enough…it takes caring and involved parents, friends, and family as well as a community that cares to make the difference!

Thank you, Clovis. Together, we make a difference.