By Debbie Adams
The Roanoke County School Board recognized Mount Pleasant Elementary School physical education teacher Allison Angell, Principal Jill Lane, and the American Heart Association (AHA) at the board’s meeting on August 25. The AHA awarded Angell and Mount Pleasant a grant for $2,500 to help build a Warrior Obstacle Course Wall at the school.
Kevin Burcham, the RCPS Supervisor of Health, Physical Education, and Driver’s Education commented on the long relationship between the school system and the programs of the AHA and the resources they provide to staff and students. He introduced Paula Wallace and Abby Bartlett from the AHA who work schools in the grant process.
Bartlett noted that the AHA works with 32,000 schools each year, all of whom are eligible to apply for grants. In the Spring 2022 cycle, 63 schools across the nation received education grants from the organization. One of those was Mount Pleasant Elementary.
Wallace commented on her pride in the partnership between RCPS and the American Heart Association over the past 40 years and presented School Superintendent Dr. Ken Nicely and School Board members a “Heart of Gold” Award commemorating that partnership.
Wallace told the board that she had been honored to visit Mount Pleasant Elementary earlier in the year and kick-off the Kids Heart Challenge. She praised Angell for being so passionate about her students and her great energy for meeting their needs and the needs of the community. In the course of a conversation at the kick-off, the two talked about grant opportunities through the AHA and the school’s desire for a Warrior Wall. Wallace encouraged her to apply for the AHA grant.
Angell had previously applied for and received a $500 grant from the Blue Ridge Eagle Credit Union to help build the Warrior Wall and anticipated a long fundraising effort to secure enough money for the equipment.
Vinton’s School Board representative Tim Greenway thanked the group for the community efforts to bring attention and resources to such a worthwhile cause.
“It’s amazing what a community of staff and students can do when working so hard towards a goal,” Greenway said.