October 12, 2010 > Sunol Glen students walk to raise money and celebrate success
Sunol Glen students walk to raise money and celebrate success
By Alyson Whitaker
Photos By Cammie Clark
On Friday, October 1, all Sunol Glen students participated in the 18th annual Walkathon. Sponsored by the Sunol Glen Community Club, the event is the main fall fundraiser for the school's parent/teacher organization. Students and staff collect pledges from family and friends, and all donations go towards the many extra programs that the Community Club supports.
In years past, the event has traditionally been held on a weekend, lasting much of the day. This year, organizers strayed from tradition by holding the event during the school day. Two large community events are taking place in the small town during September and October, and organizers were sensitive to the already packed fall schedules of many families and community members.
By holding the event during school hours, all children participated, regardless of whether they collected pledges or not. This provided a sense of unity as the students all walked together. As the "senior" class on campus, the eighth grade class helped to orchestrate and manage the flow of walkers during the event, giving them a special leadership role.
While many students walked at a leisurely pace, completing five to eight laps in the 45 minutes, there were a few die-hards who took the task at hand to heart-7th grader Winnie Chen topped the charts with 17 laps, and third-graders Ian Campbell and Logan Finch tied for second with 13 each.
A brief celebratory program followed the walking, with a special speech from Alameda County Superintendent of Education, Sheila Jordan. Ms. Jordan congratulated students and staff on their great academic achievement this last year, and acknowledged the increased API score with the following comments:
"The increase of 23 points in one year is an exceptional achievement for which we can all be proud. This year's performance places Sunol Glen Elementary among the top schools in the state. I often speak about how test scores aren't the only indication of student success, but they certainly are an important component. The teachers, students and parents here at Sunol Glen should take pride in knowing that the long hours of dedication and hard work have paid off in a big way. I know that Superintendent Barnes set out last year to motivate the teaching staff to reach farther than ever to fulfill the promise of a high-quality education to the students of this community. I want to thank Molly Barnes for her leadership in setting a high goal and ensuring that an adequate plan and the necessary supports were in place to see it through to the end. She's an inspired leader for the district and I look forward to more great things to come!" said Jordan.
The day wrapped up with cupcakes and a visit from the Cal Fire firefighters, who helped the kids (and several parents and staff members too!) cool off with a good dousing from the fire hose.
While pledges are still coming in, the event has raised more than $6,000 to date, all of which will directly benefit the students at Sunol Glen.