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Service & Awards

A LEGACY for Florida Schools

A Day Of Service, Fun, and Connections For NEA Members And Students

By the time about 800 public school students from across Central Florida bounded from a caravan of school buses, the yearlong plans of an army of NEA member volunteers—Student Program, NEA-Retired, Osceola County Education Association (OCEA), and Florida Education Association (FEA)—were in place.

The energetic students joined hundreds of community leaders and NEA members at Osceola High and Thacker Avenue Elementary Schools in Kissimmee, Fla., for NEA’s first Leaders Empowering Grassroots Advocacy for Communities and Youth (LEGACY) Project. LEGACY, designed like a community fair, kicked off last June in conjunction with the NEA Representative Assembly. These annual, school-based events were formerly known as Outreach to Teach.

The day included preK screening, visits by healthcare providers, and Read Across America book activities, and voter registration.

At Thacker Avenue Elementary School, LEGACY activities continued. Everyone pitched in to sow a new community garden, including NEA President Lily Eskelsen García, Vice President Becky S. Pringle, and Secretary-Treasurer Princess Moss. An interior wall at Thacker got the artist touch—a cheery, new mural painted by the 21-year-old artist simply known as Inocente. Her creation, “Opportunity Grows Here,” was commissioned by NEA.

“If one student looks back on this day and says, ‘That’s when my life changed,’ then every step that it took for us to get here will have been worth it,” said Chelsey Herrig, chair of the NEA Student Program.

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