We made it happen. We will finally get flashing lights in our school zones so cars will slow down. How did we manage it? First, someone had to be hit by a car so that was our wonderful Ms. Flo. We are so very grateful that she will be returning back to us soon. We’ve missed her. Give her a warm welcome back and show some extra love to all of our crossing guards. Second, we had the help of a lot of media attention. Third, we had the help of city and county officials. Primarily, however, the biggest reason we got these lights is because we had parents, faculty, and administration who were willing to take time out of their busy lives to push for these lights and let the school board know how much we needed them.
One of the great things about our PTO is that everyone is a member. Everyone. If you are part of the Grahamwood family, you are part of the PTO. Our PTO has been the envy of other schools over the years. We do a lot for Grahamwood. It is all 100% volunteering. It is parents, teachers, faculty, and administration who have busy lives but still find a few minutes or hours each week to donate their time to make this school a better place. We choose to be of service for all of our children. The volunteering might be picking up garbage, planting new bushes and grass, donating money, or painting classrooms in the hot summer when the AC is turned off so teachers and children have a space worthy of what goes on in a classroom. It also means, however, that we do the simple things like not letting our kids throw down garbage in the first place. We don’t kill our grass by parking on the lawn because we want to make our own VIP parking spot when we pick up our kids from aftercare. We follow the rules in the school zones and car lines and don’t create hazards which put all of our kids in jeopardy.
It takes a village and you are part of that village. For all of you who take a few minutes or hours each week to be of service to our children, we say thank you. You are doing important work. For those of you who were making calls, sending emails, going to meetings, getting on the news, making donations, or going to school board meetings to get those school zone flashers – job well done! You have shown your children that they are valued and that being of service to others is important work.
The school board will be paying for the flashing lights and we’ve raised enough money in our IOBY campaign to cover the cost of painting the crosswalks and/or school zones. Our own Yancy Villa is going to put her amazing artistic skills to work on this project. As for the timeline, the city engineers estimate that they will be finished with the plan for where the lights are installed by mid-November. Then the project moves to SCS for them to purchase the equipment for the city to install.
It is time to move forward with funding other important projects. We have many needs which include better access into the school, expanded parking, gates around the playground to keep our kids safe, and environmental obstacles to prevent parents, who do not follow the rules, from jeopardizing the safety of our children or damaging our school property. We look forward to hearing everyone’s input on how we can best move forward to make this school safer and to continue to be the envy of other schools.