Tifton students and teachers 'Pay it Forward' - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Tifton students and teachers 'Pay it Forward'

By  Stephanie Springer  - bio | email

Tifton, GA (WALB) – The Christmas season typically brings out the best in people. And Students, teachers and staff at Charles Spencer Elementary School in Tifton have embraced the concept of paying it forward.

And they're spreading their generosity.

A teacher said she got the idea she got the idea from the Kevin Spacey movie "Pay It Forward." Now the halls and classroom doors are plastered with signs that read "How are you paying it forward?" and those students are hard at work.

 Something special is happening inside this elementary school. 600 students, teachers and staff are giving up precious time to help others.  "Ine night I was laying in bed and I thought wouldn't be nice if every single class could do a good deed," said Teacher Jane Walker, who used the simple concept of "paying it forward.

She says the idea has caught on quickly and every class is doing something to help others. Nine-year-old Leilana Fonsah's class is helping tutor students in need. "I'm working on a story. I really want to finish but instead I'm tutoring."

Marquez Maxon said, "Our class is helping the humane society. We're donating food and stuff like that."

 Luke Stephenson said "We're donating clothes we don't wear anymore and toys, and book bags."

Students are selling candy canes to help pay for research to help a student who is battling a rare and incurable disease.

And it's not just the students- the custodial staff is paying it forward, too. All four put their money together and bought presents for 10 special needs students. "We seen the papers on the doors and I said it would be nice if we could do something for the special for Christmas."

The special needs class is making sandwiches for the local soup kitchen. But why are students so eager to help others? "We want people to know there is someone who cares for them. You don't have to go through life feeling lonely."

The school says they hope to continue this all year. Students donated one thousand dollars to Santa's Helper, money that would have normally gone to their accelerated reader store.

Some other ideas classes have come up with include purchasing toys for HeadStart, baking cookies for a local mission group, and even pulling weeds outside the school.

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