Pocopson Elementary rises to the challenge
By John Chambless
Taking school spirit to a whole new level, 50 teachers and staff members – along with principal Andrew McLaughlin – took the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge on Aug. 21 at Pocopson Elementary School.
Dressed in matching Pocopson T-shirts, the crowd gathered on the front sidewalk on the school's “Sneak a Peek” day, when students and parents can meet their teachers and see the building before the start of the school year. Plenty of families and kids gathered in the parking lot as 2:30 approached and the buckets full of ice and water were prepared.
McLaughlin welcomed everyone and added, “We would like to challenge all of the parents and the students at Pocopson to join us. This is not a free ride,” before he led the team in picking up their buckets and dousing themselves. Everyone who participated donated to ALS research, and a donation bucket was placed on the sidewalk so families could donate as well.
In the office before the challenge took place, McLaughlin explained that the school decided to take part in the international fundraising craze because the father of Pocopson teacher Megan Glod-Wetzel passed away in April from ALS. Another staff member's father has the disease. The school was also challenged to take part by school superintendent John Sanville.
The mass dunking was videotaped, and McLaughlin said the clip will be shown on the school's TV channel on the first day of school.
Judging by the screams and applause of the students in the crowd -- one of whom screamed “That's so awesome!” as their teachers got soaked -- the ice has been officially broken on the start of the school year at Pocopson.