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PCHS alumni clean alma mater


PCHS Alumni Association President Hoyt Wells and members Bob Gutherie, A.C. Clevland and Phillip Vinson removed debris, cut down weeds and spread mulch Wednesday while volunteering their time and sprucing up the school, preping the facility for the students on opening day. | Nathan Strickland/FCT


PHIL CAMPBELL- Communities throughout Franklin County have always taken pride in their local schools, and now that times are tough, school officials have looked beyond the school hallways for help.

Phil Campbell High School principal Cindy Davis said there is always a list of “to-dos” that need to be done before students head back to school and this year, with money being scarce in the county school system, people have volunteered their time to come and help spruce-up the school before the start of the school year.

“We have been short-staffed all summer long and the list of to-dos kept adding up,” she said. “Thankfully we have had a good response from our community to come out and help with things that need to be done.”

School officials organized a workday on Thursday for those who were willing to come help clean up the school, but those who were former students felt like one day wasn’t enough.

The PCHS Alumni Association realized the need last year when they scheduled a workday at their alma mater and found they had ran out of time to do things that needed to be done.

Alumni Association President Hoyt Wells decided one day of work was not enough this year to help with the chores around the school and believed working  “on and off” for a week should accomplish all that needs to be done.

“I believe anytime you go to a school for so long you begin to have a sense of loyalty and pride for that school,” Wells said. “Schools are so stressed for funds these days and since we love this school so much we decided to lend a hand and come out and work around the school using the money we have raised through our association and keep the school money there to go towards the students like it should be.”

Davis said having the Alumni Association to come out and put forth the extra effort is greatly appreciated by everyone.

Davis said Alumni members hauled off dead trees, pulled dead foliage from the square in the middle of the campus, spread mulch and have cleaned up dirt and rocks left from erosion around the school.

“In hard economic times, you have to make do with what you have and even though society these days are all for tearing down and rebuilding, our facility here is really not in that bad of shape, it just needs a little bit of love,” Davis said. “I love hearing those in the association talking to each other about when they attended school here and how much pride they have for the school. They have been so helpful. They did this last year and I think they just enjoy giving back to the school and that just means so much to me.”

Davis said teachers, parents and even students pitched in to continue the work on Thursday to make sure the school looked clean for the 2010-2011 school year.

The trend of communities lending a hand to spruce up the school has also spread to the Tharptown where educators have been working endlessly to paint hallways and wax floors prior to opening day.

Franklin County Superintendent Gary Williams said it is fantastic to see the efforts from faculty and staff working hard to save money for the school year.

“I am aware that people are volunteering their time to clean-up their facilities without using school funds and I, for one, am proud and grateful of those who have donated their time and labor to make their community schools look great for our student’s first day of school,” he said.

“We have great people who really care for their schools and I’m sure their efforts will be noticed and appreciated by the students when classes begin.”