Celebrate Guilford Primary School!

(Excerpts from a press release.)

GUILFORD – April 2010 has been declared as “Grange Month,” and Valley Grange is inviting community members to join the celebration.  “For over 140 years, the Grange has worked to advance the interest of rural Americans by providing a legislative voice for their political concerns and by showing them how to strengthen their neighborhoods through community service,” Valley Grange Master Jim Annis said. “During Grange Month, we want our community to know that the Grange is a living organization that has a lot to offer it.”

Program Leader Walter Boomsma notes that this year’s program will break from tradition a bit. “For a number of years we’ve used this special meeting to honor a local citizen who’s made a substantial contribution to our communities and this year is no exception but it is a lot different! As we discussed candidates for this year’s award, we found ourselves coming back to our relationship with Guilford Primary School, the school’s contribution to the community, and the opportunities they’ve provided us to work with the kids. Then we realized the school is as much a ‘citizen’ as any individual so this year’s recipient is Guilford Primary School—teachers, staff and students past and present, and parents!”

The celebration will take place on April 16, 2010 at the Valley Grange Hall in Guilford. Members of the community are invited to share in a traditional potluck supper starting at 6 PM with the actual celebration beginning at 7:30 PM. The public is invited and encouraged to come prepared with testimonials to the accomplishments and community services the school’s teachers, staff, and kids make. “Funny stories are especially welcome!” Boomsma noted.

Julie Orton, principal of the school is excited not only that the school is being honored. She notes this is yet another learning opportunity for students. “We do think of ourselves as a community within a community and this honor gives us a wonderful opportunity to teach students the importance of citizenship.”

The Grange not only provides fun-filled and educational programs and activities for its members, it also provides them with opportunities to strengthen the community with community service projects. While Valley Grange has a wide array of programs and projects, many members confess that working with the children brings extra special rewards. The Grange’s involvement with Guilford Primary School started with the familiar “Words for Thirds Program’ which provides every third grader with their own personal dictionary. Over the years the program has expanded to include “Bookworming” with Grangers visiting the school to listen to children read and the Newspapers in Education program which involves second and third graders using their creative and artistic skills to develop advertisements for the Grange. Several ads are selected and used by the Grange throughout the year.

 “Our involvement with the school has really developed into a partnership,” noted Grange Community Service Chairperson Mary Annis. “As we’ve spent time with the school and the children we’ve discovered how much they give back to the community and to us. We really do have a win/win relationship and it’s exciting to realize we have a wonderful opportunity to recognize it!”

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  1. Celebrate! « Valley Grange #144

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