Ash Grove High School seniors given care packages as parting gift from staff

This year’s graduating seniors from Ash Grove High School received a parting gift from the school; care packages containing several items including snack foods, a gift card, art supplies and more. Principal Chris Thompson said this is the first year the school has given graduating seniors gift packages, and they were given as a way for the faculty to reach out to the students during the COVID-19 situation.
“We wanted the kids to know that we are thinking of them and are here for them during this pandemic,”
he said.  
Thompson added that giving the care packages benefitted the faculty as much as it did the students.
“We miss all of our students,” he said. “I think as much as we did this for the kids, we did this for us. Seeing our kids was emotional and healing.”
The packages were delivered to most of the students (10 opted to pick theirs up instead) on Monday, May 4. Thompson said the faculty spoke to the students about what they would like to see in their care packages.
“We surveyed the kids on their favorite soda (or) beverage, candy, favorite school (or) art supply,” he said, “(and) also included some Little Debbie snack cakes, a kite, chalk, and a $5 gift card to a destination of their choice (i.e. Walmart, Chick-Fil-A, Wendy’s, Sonic, Taco Bell, or Maple Lane).  They also received a yard sign made by Crackerjack Shack.”
Thompson said the majority of the care package items were paid for the by the school, but some funding also came from Project Graduation. Other items were donated.
Putting the care packages together, Thompson said, was a team effort.
“Amanda Cox and Karla Tate did most of the shopping and put together the packages,” he said. “Dianna Lobdell, Kelly Blankenship and Jocelyn Lowry helped pack some of the bags. Kelly Blankenship and Jocelyn Lowry made and cut vinyl to put names on the bags. Stephanie Hayes crocheted a graduation cap with tassel and made keychains for all of our seniors. It truly was a group effort.”
Thompson also said he wished this year’s graduating seniors all the best as the prepare to go out into the world, and he thanked the faculty members who came up with the care packages.
“Congratulations to the class of 2020,” he said. “You are a special group and we have no doubts you will do big things. Also, a huge thank you to all of the teachers who traveled around Monday they are simply the best. The faculty and staff came up with great ideas for the care packages and I didn’t hesitate to allow them to run with it. I love to support the teachers and all of their crazy ideas. It makes this crazy time a little more bearable.”
Any senior who hasn’t received their care package should contact the high school or e-mail Amanda Cox at to arrange a day and time to pick theirs up.
A video of the faculty members delivering the care packages was made by Jocelyn Lowry; it can be viewed on the Ash Grove High School’s Facebook page.


Lawrence County Record

312 S. Hickory St.
Mt. Vernon, MO, 65712


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