Day of Service honors Scales’ legacy
Published 5:50 pm Thursday, December 3, 2015
Cumberland County Public Schools honored the legacy of a beloved former educator Wednesday with the Betty Scales Day of Service initiative.
“We are proud to be honoring and remembering Mrs. Betty Scales by serving our community as she did,” said Superintendent Amy Griffin. “She was a remarkable woman, mother, educator and civic leader. My hope is that we all try to live by her example.”
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High school students made cards for soldiers, first responders and nursing home residents and collected canned goods for the local food bank. Middle school and high school students also participated by collecting items for the Christmas Mother and by visiting patients at The Woodlands retirement community in Farmville.
Cumberland High teacher Catherine Fleischman’s
knitting group was busy making scarves.
“The knitting club was started because we like to knit,” she said, noting that the scarves would be sent to soldiers.
The Day of Service is especially heartwarming for Cumberland High Principal Jeffrey Scales, because Betty Scales was his mother.
After his mother died on May 12, the Board of Supervisors decided to declare Betty Scales Day of Service every Dec. 2.
“We never anticipated it,” Scales said.
He said something small would mean more to his mother than big accolades. She would not have wanted the Day of Service to interfere with instruction time, so the students’ volunteer efforts were limited to an extended seventh period.
In total, Scales said, the high school students collected about 300 pounds of food and 25 pounds of clothing and made 300 cards. “I’m proud of my students,” he said.
The Day of Service was not limited to Cumberland High. Middle school and elementary students had the opportunity to give back to the community in a positive way.
“We let the grade levels select what they wanted to do,” said Virginia Gills, principal at Cumberland Elementary. For example, kindergarten students made cards for the elderly and first-graders collected stuffed animals for the Cumberland Sheriff’s Department.
“I think there’s no greater learning than through serving others,” Gills said.