Walk-a-thon kids raise almost $12,000 for the LO Schools Foundation

by: REVIEW PHOTO: VERN UYETAKE - Laura Nelson leads her third grade class around the course during the Westridge Walk-a-thon last week.Westridge Elementary School students, teachers and supporters stretched their legs last week in the bright sunshine — bringing in thousands of dollars to support Lake Oswego Schools Foundation.

In addition to sneakers and comfy clothes, many students who participated in the annual Westridge Walk-a-thon on April 10 wore yellow T-shirts that said, in black lettering: “Thanks to my teachers my future is bright.” The children also laughed and played about in the shade of the school’s covered basketball courts, readying their muscles for a jaunt around the school playground. by: REVIEW PHOTO: VERN UYETAKE - Foundation Board member Jennifer Pahl cheers on Kirsten Weiler and Reese Ericson.

Walk-a-thon donations totaled more than $14,000 gross for the nonprofit foundation, which supported 20 additional teaching positions this year in the school district. The foundation’s goal during the current campaign is $2 million. The goal for the Westridge Walk-a-thon involved having each student donate $30, said Kelley Peake, event coordinator.

"It's about everybody doing a little bit to create a bigger result," Peake said. The children raised almost $12,000 and got $2,500 from businesses for prizes for the event such as those yellow T-shirts for the kids and blue T-shirts for teachers that say "I teach. What's your super power?" School officials and volunteers — which Oregon Department of Education documents said had 465 students as of Oct. 1 — broke the Walkathon up into a stroll in the morning and one in the afternoon. Nearly all students participated, whether they raised money or not. The prizes helped increase donations, and there was double what came in last year, Peake said.

“We partnered with local businesses who donated enough money to help us purchase prizes for the students,” Peake said. “This support from the local businesses to purchase the prizes (helped) to encourage students to raise more money for their teachers. It is a win-win for everyone involved. The teachers, students, local businesses, and the community as a whole.”

By Jillian Daley
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