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Knox Elementary raises money for students to go to Washington

About 40 students will see history made in Washington, D.C. on Jan. 20 when Barack Obama is sworn in as the 44th president of the United States.

These fourth-and fifth-graders from Knox Elementary School won’t miss their opportunity, promises Joslyn Reddick, principal of the school.

The students and the school have permission from the Selma City Schools Board of Education. The buses are lined up.

But they need help.

Recently, Reddick sent out a letter to local businesses, asking them to help send these children to Washington to the inauguration. She also has made an appeal to the Selma City Council.

“We build students by encouraging them to become responsible leaders,” Reddick said, explaining the school participated in the national student elections for president during October and November. Student wrote papers about their choices for candidates and participated in get out the vote campaigns at school.

If her students are mature enough to accomplish these goals, then they should reap the benefits of actually seeing what voting does, Reddick reasons.

The trip costs about $18,000. The school has held a fall fundraiser and sold doughnuts to help with the costs.

Now Reddick asks for a $250 sponsorship for the children.

“Any amount that you are willing to give will be fine,” she said.

Some of the children need other donations — socks, coats, hats, mittens or gloves to take with them. “You can donate them directly to the school,” she said.

She wants to have the money in hand by Dec. 2.

On Tuesday at the city council meeting, Councilwoman Dr. Monica Newton called the project “inspirational” and “a wonderful opportunity.”

Councilwoman Bennie Ruth Crenshaw, who works with the Selma Youth Ambassadors, promised her help to Reddick, as did Councilwoman Susan Keith.

Said Councilwoman Angela Benjamin, “This is awesome.”