Wayne Country Day School wins $100,000 in contest
By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on February 21, 2010 12:42 PM
Dia Shreenath, a second-grader at Wayne Country Day School, puts the finishing touches on headmaster Todd Anderson's $100,000 makeover following the announcement that the school had received $100,000 from U.S. Cellular's "Calling All Communities" campaign.
For the second year of the U.S. Cellular's "Calling All Communities" campaign, a Wayne County school has won a share of $1 million.
More than 430,000 calls came in nominating nearly 6,800 schools from across the country.
And on Friday afternoon, Wayne Country Day School became the recipient of $100,000, which will be used to pay for 18 Promethean boards for classrooms.
"So what do you think about winning $100,000?" Headmaster Todd Anderson asked the students and staff, gathered in the gymnasium for the announcement.
Pandemonium broke out as more than two dozen U.S. Cellular employees entered the gym amid a spray of confetti, throwing T-shirts into the audience.
Anderson credited students and staff with spreading the word to the community to garner support for the contest, including one parent in particular.
"Edie's mom," Wendy Hooks, principal at Brogden Primary School, which won the $100,000 prize last year and was ineligible this year.
"She came to us and said, 'You can do this,'" said Anderson, who at first was hesitant because WCDS is a smaller school. "She said, 'I will help you.'"
Marcel Bekers, director of sales for U.S. Cellular, said he was happy to see another win for Wayne County.
"We started this program a year and a half ago because we really wanted to give back to our communities and help the schools in North Carolina," he said. "Last year we brought two schools checks for $100,000 in eastern North Carolina (Washington received the other). This year I challenged my team -- we did it last year, we can do it this year.
"I have to tell you, first of all, I'm so proud of what you have done here at Wayne Country Day School. It's a small school and you have obviously the whole country vying for these dollars."
WCDS was the sixth school winner announced, with four remaining.
Teachers and students who brought in the most cards, representing calls made in the contest, were also announced -- Cathie Hooks, a seventh-grade teacher, was in first place, followed by sixth-grade teacher Kim Pearson, second place and Bonnie Hughes, a first-grade teacher, third.
Teacher Eric Snoddy announced the top seven students, whose prize was to do a "$100,000 makeover" on Anderson.
Students included sophomores Kai Jones and Hannah Pearson, Marlon Coley and Holden Edwards, eighth-graders, Kate Thompson, sixth grade, Andrew Shaw, fourth grade, and Dia Shreenath, second grade.
The students had 15 minutes to revamp Anderson's look. They initially attempted to shave his head but the clippers were uncooperative, so the group opted instead to paint his fingernails and toenails, apply face paint and spray different colors in his hair.