Class of the Week 4/09: Newman Catholic Middle School
by Natalie Sparacio
WAUSAU (WAOW)-- Twelve years ago, Joanne Powell, the guidance counselor at Newman Catholic Middle School wanted to create a positive extracurricular group for students to be a part of.
Powell says, "... I wanted to create a group that did activities... not just within the school but outside in the community as well."
So she came up with "Positive Peers", a group of 20, 7th and 8th graders, looking to step up and make a positive impact on the community.
Powell says, "... kids aren't troublemakers they just need avenues to show how good they really are. They think of other people all the time and they just need avenues to make it happen and things to do."
Each summer these kids hold a car wash to raise money to cover volunteer projects throughout the year.
Whether it's organizing flowers for Daffodil Days, ringing bells for the salvation army, or selling desserts at the Newman Catholic Auction.
It's a group that attracts students to want to make a difference.
Brad Magrecke, an 8th grader says, "... I thought that it really helped out the community and just be really nice to people in general... just thought I could do something you know."
Mallory Wanserski, an 8th grader says, "... I think it means to just help the community and be nice to everybody at school and set a good example for the 6th and 7th graders."
Hadleigh Baumann, a 7th grader says, "... I already know some of the communities I can help out with so I'll know what can do later on in my life."
Recently, the students held a hot chocolate sale for a project they call "Warm Wishes"... they used their recess time making fleece blankets, writing poems and prayers and making gift baskets for local families in need.
The money from the hot chocolate sale went towards grocery store gift cards.
Mallory says, "... I feel like I accomplished something really good because it feels like you're helping the community really well and I just feel really good about it."
These students honor the schools tradition of getting out in the community to volunteer and put time and hard work into each and every project they're a part of.
They're commitment to helping others makes them this week's Class of the Week.
Class of the Week winners are announced every Friday morning at 6:30 a.m. To nominate students who are going above and beyond, email us at email@example.com .