Organizing to Help a School in Need

 Local union president issues a community 'Call to Action' in Hernando......

Most Florida schools open towards the end of August, but that hasn’t deterred teachers, retired teachers, parents and community members from getting a head start during the first week of August at a remote school in Hernando County.

Hernando Classroom Teachers Association
All week long, classrooms, the cafeteria, the media center and the school grounds have been overflowing with adults, rather than students. They’re all motivated by a common goal; to give Eastside Elementary School a facelift and show support for Hernando County’s first elementary school to receive an F grade from the state.

It started when Hernando Classroom Teachers Association president, Jo Ann Hartge, sent out a call to action to her members. On Monday, dozens of teachers from across the county arrived ready to hit the books. A group of custodians showed up on Tuesday to work the hallways, clear storage areas and move desks, chairs and other heavy furniture. Wednesday was media specialist day. The media specialist helped get the media center back in shape. Hartge says, “Volunteers have showed up every day and they keep on coming. This is about teachers sticking together and supporting one another," said Hartge

It’s been a busy week at Eastside Elementary. While Eastside’s teachers are preparing to greet their students and kick off the new school year, other teachers and community members are standing with them. They’re unpacking boxes and sorting through books to find the old, tattered and outdated ones to toss and the good books that can be used in the classroom.  They’re replacing books on shelves, cleaning floors and clearing debris off the school grounds. Hartge says it all to let the Eastside community know, “It is time to stand up, unite and be strong for our teachers! The resignation of Tony Bennett is only the 1st step! Let's take over our schools and show why we are proud to teach in Hernando!”

Working together, the community has pledged to do whatever is necessary to return Eastside Elementary to school everyone can feel proud about.







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