SOUTH HAVEN — It’s not every day that teachers, coaches and administrators agree to willingly allow students to pie them in the face, but more than a handful at South Haven High School agreed to do just that just before Thanksgiving.
They did so as a fundraiser for the high school’s Peer-to-Peer program’s annual Thanksgiving dinner.
Eight faculty and staff lined up Friday to be pied by students and teachers, who bought raffle tickets for the chance to do so during the high school cafeteria’s two lunch hours. Superintendent Kevin Schooley was joined by high school Principal Ryan Williamson, Athletic Director Adam Verseput, electives teacher Sandy VanderRoest, social studies teachers Cory Salyer and Mark Eddy, math teacher Allan Anastacio and science teacher Mark Woolcock.
“We had eight very braves souls who agreed to do this twice, once at A Lunch and then at B Lunch,” said Special Education teacher Jennifer Fedewa, who organized the fundraiser and who leads the Peer-to-Peer program. She tried to make the event a little less messy for the willing victims by supplying them with plastic ponchos, plastic shower caps and small masks to cover their eyes.
“I guess that’s the elementary teacher and momma in me,” said Fedewa said.
The event raised $125.
Now in its fourth year, the program matches South Haven High School upperclassmen mentors, or “links” as they referred to as, to special needs students.
Links who take the program, enroll in an actual class where they study disabilities, write research papers, and spend time helping special needs students with homework and socializing with them. Thirty-four upperclassmen have enrolled in the program this year. They are paired with 17 special needs students.
In addition to the curriculum component to the class, mentors and the students in Fedewa’s class also get together for activities.
One such activity is the annual Thanksgiving dinner, which the class will prepare and eat today.
Thanks to the pie-in-the-face fundraiser, the program this year was able to purchase four turkeys and other fixings to make for a nice holiday dinner for 60 “links” and Fedewa’s students.