BLOOMINGTON — When students at Cedar Ridge Elementary School want to see new items in the classroom, they turn to the student council.
Through fundraising efforts, the fourth- and fifth-graders on the student council have awarded $940 to the school this year to purchase things like a new bike rack, learning apps, tablets and books.
“Despite the fact we aren’t getting funding from the state, we’re still working hard to put fun and engaging things in the classrooms,” said Heather Rogers, Cedar Ridge teacher and co-sponsor of student council.
Students and teachers can submit requests for beneficial classroom items and the student council reviews the requests and votes for which ones to fund each month.
To pay for the items, the council members host fundraisers by selling Krispy Kreme doughnuts and Smencils, which are pencils scented like cotton candy, root beer and watermelon. Another popular fundraiser is a photo booth hosted by the grandparents of council president, Rylie Spencer.
“Giving these grants is fun because we can help other students and teachers and see classrooms evolve,” said Rylie, Cedar Ridge fifth-grader.
Her fellow fifth-grader Ava Ryan is student council vice president.
“It’s kind of scary to talk in front of the whole school, but it feels great,” said Ava.
She and Rylie handed out three grants funded by the council at an assembly Friday morning at the Unit 5 school.
The first grant given was for $55 to purchase the Harry Potter book series for the third-grade classroom library. Grayson Wills put in the request for the box set.
“I wanted the whole set in our classroom because right now we only have the first, third and fourth book,” said Grayson.
The second $100 grant went to Nina Norris to purchase books to add to her third-grade classroom. The final grant was for $75 for Kayleigh Twork’s second grade bilingual class to buy a new bookshelf to house their growing literary collection.
“My classroom received some student council grants a few years ago for iPad keyboards and individual whiteboards,” said Twork. “This bookshelf will make our library more inviting and easy to use.”
This is the third year the student group has been giving back and Rogers said the members seem even more eager to share this year.
"The council kids are feeling proud of their involvement in school,” she said. “They are really setting an example for others.”