Penn Hills alumni give back to the district by donating school supplies

The Penn Hills Class of 2001 alumni wanted to find a way to give back to the school district that marked them after graduation.

The class showed their gratitude by collecting school supplies to donate to Penn Hills Elementary School earlier this month. The bag contained markers, pencils, crayons, crayons and wipes. Two alumni representing the class presented the bag to Superintendent Nancy Hines and Elementary Principal Kristin Brown.

“It’s a time when we come full circle to be able to give back. I have so many fond memories of being in elementary school,” Erin Pavlock said.

Pavlock was vice president of the senior class and had Hines as her biology teacher while at Penn Hills. She hopes this gesture will encourage other classes to give back. Often the supplies come out of teachers’ pockets, she said.

Ashley Johnson, another alumnus, worked in the school office and was part of the student newspaper.

Johnson said the idea to collect supplies came from one of the Class of 2001 graduates, Carrie Ponce O’Kelley. O’Kelley told class president and reunion planning committee chair Brooke Luthultz about it during their 20th class reunion in September. The class has stepped up efforts to donate supplies, Johnson said.

“We wanted to give it to everyone who needed it. I loved my time at Penn Hills,” she said.

Brown said this generosity helps recognize that students can benefit from this support.

“To see them (elders) know that our kids can have this success is nice,” she said.

Brown said this may be the first time alumni have donated directly to the elementary school. The school district has brought back former students to speak to students as part of its summer program.

Hines said the donation was an assurance of the school’s goal of providing a positive experience for students.

“That’s what we encourage seeing alumni is that they have great memories that compel them to give back,” she said.

Tanisha Thomas is the editor of Tribune-Review. You can contact Tanisha at 412-480-7306, tthomas@triblive.com or via Twitter .



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