“It gives the students ownership,” said CES Assistant Principal Allyson Long. “They are a part of something. It’s their school. A part of them is here.”
Artist-in-residence Michael Geddings oversaw the art project. It was sponsored by House of Raeford.
“I love it,” said Chuck Underhill, of House of Raeford. “It’s incredible. Better than anything we expected.”
The mural is part of the school’s Leader in Me initiative, highlighting Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. The program seeks to develop each child’s leadership qualities, with a focus on the 7 habits: Be Proactive; Begin With The End In Mind; Put First Things First; Think Win-Win; Seek First To Understand, Then To Be Understood; Synergize; and Sharpen The Saw.
Underhill said the goal is to “encourage kids to work hard every day and do their very best.” He said if you form that effort in fifth-grade students, it is an investment in tomorrow.
Geddings said it is good to expose the students to art. He also said it is inspirational to him when he recognizes an artistic spark in a child.
“Some kids are really into it,” said Geddings. He said he can tell by the questions they ask. Geddings also said he was moved by a mural when he was in the second grade, and it was the beginning of his effort to pursue art as a career. He hopes that happens with the students at CES.
Long said she is thrilled with the mural and she is impressed with House of Raeford’s interest in local schools. She also said Underhill visits CES often, and has become personally involved in promoting projects for the school.
In January, House of Raeford’s non-profit organization, FLOCK, donated 900 pairs of headphones to CES. It was enough to provide a set of headphones for every student.
Long, said she is appreciative that Cayce Elementary has a business partner with the level of interest that House of Raeford has.