Good work, volunteers

Published 9:20 pm Thursday, July 23, 2015

Some of them participated for the experience. Some did it for the volunteer hours, a requirement for graduation from Suffolk Public Schools. Some did it because they just like children. A couple probably did it because their parents told them they had to.

Whatever their reasons for participating as volunteers in the revamped SPS summer school program, called Learning and Enrichment for Academic Progress, about three dozen volunteers have helped make the program the success most accounts portray this year.

The summer school is being held at Mack Benn Jr. Elementary School and has about two weeks remaining. Officials in charge of LEAP say they could not have done what they’ve accomplished without their volunteers, especially those from Suffolk’s high schools who chose to sacrifice a portion of their summer break.

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The older students have helped with lessons, guided them through computer modules and generally served as role models and mentors for their younger charges. It’s been great experience for the teens, especially those who have some idea they’d like to be teachers one day. It’s likely that some of the high school volunteers will come away from the experience with hearts changed about former plans to be teachers. That’s a good thing, as well.

Their volunteerism also has been good for the younger children, who get to see firsthand what it means to give from the heart. Having seen the examples set by youth who probably seemed more like big brothers and sisters than teachers, such lessons will have been well taught.

Congratulations to everyone involved in this year’s summer school program. And we offer a hearty thumbs-up to the 35 volunteers who helped make it such a success.