A "Readathon" fundraiser for Grand View Elementary School
's library has surpassed the $50,000 mark, thanks to families, businesses, and one final donation that brought them over the top.
The fundraiser blew far past its initial goal of $10,000 to help underwrite Grand View's library and literacy needs, including books, technology, licensing fees, and new equipment.
For the two-week period of the Readathon, 386 Grand View students (about 75 percent of the student body) read for 136,164 minutes (nearly 2,300 hours).
Families and friends made individual donations of $25, $50, and more toward their reader’s efforts. Collectively, the student’s total raise came to just shy of $48,000. At that point, a Grand View family-owned business, Giant Smiles Dental
, stepped up to make a final sponsorship donation to put
the fundraising total over the top at $50,000.
"We are blown away with what the students have done," said Kate Sinclair, VP of fundraising for the Grand View Elementary PTA.
"Our students and teachers embraced the challenge with so much
enthusiasm and it sparked a fierce, fun competition between the classes –
all reading individually and as a class to “out read” the others," said
students tracked their daily reading sessions online via their profile
pages and we watched the
leaderboard change daily as the commitment to their goals increased."
Local businesses supported the effort as well. Pages, a Bookstore
worked with the school to create a special Readathon section in the store and on their website with
great titles for readers in all grades. Additionally, they donated book prizes to the top readers and a
percentage of sales back to the school.
Simms Restaurant Group
, a longtime supporter of the school, has donated a percentage of sales back to Grand View throughout the year. For the Readathon, they
donated several prizes that the students had been competing for in the Readathon.
And finally, Giant Smiles Dental kicked in the donation to bring the total over the $50K mark.
"Our family just relocated
from NYC to Manhattan Beach
in October, and we want to get involved with our community," said Dr. Gregory Ray of Giant Smiles Dental. "My wife
Nicola Harrison is an author [The Show Girl, coming August 2021], and reading is a
big part of our home life. It is stressed as very important to our
kids Christopher, a 5th grader at Grandview, and Greyson, age 2. This seemed
like the perfect opportunity to introduce my new practice and sponsor
our new community in a worthy cause."
"All of these organizations are total gems and dedicated to supporting our schools," said Sinclair. "We are so appreciative of their partnership."
Idea Began with $10,000 Goal
The idea was brought to the Grand View PTA over the summer by Heidi Snively, Grand View's library resource specialist and who Sinclair calls the "heart" of Grand View's library space. "We loved the concept and were excited to launch it for our students this
spring," said Sinclair.
The raise from the Readathon will underwrite the library and literacy needs (books, technology, licensing
fees, new equipment, etc.) at Grand View for 2021, which was the initial $10,000 goal.
Beyond that, the PTA is asking the students and families that participated in the Readathon to vote on what they’d like to the rest of the funds to go toward.
Some priorities include the purchase of mature trees for the new Grand View campus, new desks/chairs/furniture for the soon-to-be completed classrooms, cold water hydration stations near the playground and fields, and more.
"We are so proud of how the students came together to accomplish their goal, and excited for them to
have a voice in how they contribute to their school," said Sinclair.
Top "Readers" Named
Following the conclusion of the Readathon, Grand View also named its top readers and classes:
Top Class – Most Minutes:
Mrs. DiBiase’s 5th Grade class
Top Class – Highest Fundraising:
Mrs. Cross’s 2nd Grade Class
Top Reader in the School – Most Minutes:
Evelyn Amezquita, Mrs. Dibiase 5th Grade
Top Reader in the School – Highest Fundraising:
Linus & Leontine Sinclair – tied, Mrs. Robertson 5th Grade & Mrs. Cross 2nd
Top Grade Level Winners
Kindergarten: Oliver Tang, Mrs. Deragisch
1st Grade: Will Newton, Mrs. Olson
2nd Grade: Leontine Sinclair, Mrs. Cross
3rd Grade: Cole Lynch, Mrs. Dever
4th Grade: Madison Nolting, Mrs. Kinzer
5th Grade: Linus Sinclair, Mrs. Robertson