Student leaders at T.J. Austin Elementary School spend 30 minutes every Friday performing a very special job. Together with counselor Olivia Sims, they organize and deliver food bags provided by the East Texas Food Bank.
Ms. Sims says the partnership with the Food Bank has been active for many years. However, Austin recently incorporated it into their student leadership jobs when the school became a Leader in Me campus.
Every six weeks, students apply and interview for jobs throughout the campus. A committee of teachers and administrators select students for different jobs based on a variety of leadership criteria. Students hold the leadership jobs for the entire six weeks and apply for new jobs the following six weeks.
Fifth grade students Regina and Miguel and fourth grade students Elyanie and Marely all said they applied for the Food Bag team because they wanted to be helpful and also help others.
“I wanted to do something to help other people,” Regina said. “Some want food because they don’t always have time to buy it.”
Marley said she applied for the team “because some kids have to stay alone for a little while and they are hungry.”
The food bags are delivered to classmates who have opted into the program through parental permission forms.
“At Austin Elementary, we believe that we all have a responsibility to be ‘A LEADER’", Principal Brandy Holland said. “In doing so, our students are taught to help one another and always look for opportunities to give back.”