Tippecanoe School Corporation
Two schools win Golden Spork award
Sue Scott

Primient and Neuhoff Media named two TSC schools as “Classroom Superstars” for donating generous amounts of food to Food Finders Food Bank. Company representatives presented the Golden Spork award to East Tipp Middle School for being the middle school that brought in the most food during the fall food drive. Dayton Elementary School also received the coveted cutlery for being the elementary school with the most donations. Fourteen schools participated in the Drive Away Hunger Food Drive.

East Tipp collected more than 15,000 pounds of food, the equivalent to 16,410 meals. Teacher Tom Rice says the school starts with a fundraiser volleyball game between the football team and the volleyball team. The event is followed by several other activities to raise funds and bring in food items. “There's not a magic formula; instead, kids get themselves and each other excited about donating,” says Rice. “East Tipp has been the top collecting school in the area for over 20 years; it's something that kids just expect themselves to do for their community as families and friends pass that spirit down. The long commitment of giving has come to represent a tradition that's not only fun to fulfill, but also a launching pad for us to do other important projects in and around our school, both individually and collectively.”

Eighth graders Max Swathwood, Alexa Mahlke, Ben Hodgen and Marley Pruitt say they are excited to see another year with East Tipp’s name added to the trophy. “The response to the food drive is overwhelming,” says Max. “We are proud of how everyone helped organize the events, donated and got involved.”

“Even the teachers get involved,” says Ben. “Mr. Rice plays guitar and other teachers play instruments and sing as we come into school to get us pumped up.”

“The award is important. It shows the whole school can come together to work as a team,” says Alexa.

“And, we take pride in carrying on this tradition,” adds Marley. “It’s rewarding to see everyone coming together for this and knowing you are helping others.”

Dayton Elementary School brought in nearly 4,600 food items (3,803 meals) in a two-week period. Principal Ryan Simmons says the food drive has become a treasured event at Dayton. “It's important to show our students the importance of giving back to our community and bring all our students together for a great cause,” says Simmons. “For our food drive, we have a competition where we see which classroom can bring in the most items each day and an overall winner for the entire food drive. This year, we created dominos in our hallway using boxed items, we asked for peanut butter and jelly to see how many sandwiches we could make, and had a friendly competition of girls (green beans) versus boys (corn) to see who could bring in the most items.”

Fifth grader Grady Conkright says the event helps them grow as a school: “It went really well. A lot of people donated to help people in need.”


Award listing East Tipp as the winner since 2011
East Tipp classroom superstars
Dayton classroom superstars