Community

The following article appeared in The Daily Commercial, Leesburg, FL

The partnership is made up of members from nearby churches: Bethany Lutheran Church, Christ United Methodist Church, Salvation Army and Macedonia Church of the Living God.

LEESBURG – A group of ladies from the Beverly Shores Elementary Partnership donated more than 90 handmade curtains to help Beverly Shores Elementary School in their improvement initiative.

The partnership is made up of members from nearby churches: Bethany Lutheran Church, Christ United Methodist Church, Salvation Army and Macedonia Church of the Living God.

“We are a faith-based group of people that got together to help support the needs of the school,” member Priscilla Scherrah said. “We formed last summer after seeing all the articles about how they were asking for the community’s help.”

Last year, the school received an “F” grade from the Florida Department of Education. Since then, there has been a concerted effort to better the school through community and parental involvement, additional training for teachers and working on various projects to get the kids excited about learning.

The partnership has held multiple benefits including a back to school luncheon, a Christmas concert and a BBQ event. They also provide incentives for teachers and students throughout the year.

But the most recent need that was brought up was for something to cover the classroom windows. Due to new safety precautions, teachers must have a way to cover windows in case of an emergency, which thus far has been done with black tape or construction paper.

“We are just overwhelmed with the generosity,” Principal Cindy Christidis said. “We are very fortunate to have them. We are aiming to get a C or higher on this year’s assessment, and with all the support we feel like that is attainable. It’s a hard job coming in with added challenges but they have really stepped up and embraced our school.”

Beverly Shores Elementary Partnership

What is it? The partnership is made up of church members from Bethany Lutheran Church, Christ United Methodist Church, Salvation Army and Macedonia Church of the Living God.

Is the partnership hosting any upcoming events? Yes. The partnership is planning a teacher luncheon in May and a special prayer service at Christ United Methodist Church in Leesburg at 6 p.m. March 31, the night before the school’s standardized testing. Everyone is welcome to attend and learn more about the partnership and how to get involved in helping the kids.

Want more information? Call 352-365-0622.

Each curtain is lined with Velcro to make it easy to cover and uncover as needed. The patterns were also chosen to add to the colorful and creativity of the classrooms, replacing the black paper and tape.

“I always try to instill that coming from an ‘F’ school doesn’t define the people or the kids,” Christidis said. “But we have to work together to turn the school around.”

Bethany Lutheran also supported Beverly Shores Elementary SchoolI in July when they held a Bar-B-Q lunch and we were able to present Beverly Shores with a check for more than $2,000.  A huge thanks goes to Colletta Doll and her committee who worked for hours to make this event such a huge success.

Bethany also continues to collect books for Beverly Shores so that each classroom can have library books available for their students.

Beverly Shores Elementary supplies breakfast for students and they have a "pantry" at school where they keep some breakfast items they use to feed children that may be late to school and have not had any breakfast.  So, we have been asked to help fill their pantry.  This won't take a huge commitment on our part but we are asked to bring a box of breakfast bars now and then.  You can simply leave them  on the table in Founders' Hall.  This month Bethany delivered over 200 BOXES of Pop-Tarts.

Special thanks to all who contributed to the "Valentines for Teachers" project at Beverly Shores Elementary. Your generous contributions allow us to partner with Christ United Methodist Church to prepare a bag of candy with a valentine and friendship bracelet for every teacher, teacher aide, and staff (130 bags).

 

Bethany also continues to supply our local Leesburg Food Bank with food items.  Jan Johnson leads this effort and we thank her for her continued involvement in this endeavor.  Items, like cereal, canned goods, etc. can be placed in the baskets on the tables in fellowship hall.

 

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