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Oakdale Students Learn to “Care and Share…”

Oakdale Elementary School Principal, Holli Armstrong, joins her 5th grade Student Council during their Annual Food Drive.
Oakdale Elementary School Principal, Holli Armstrong, joins her 5th grade Student Council during their Annual Food Drive.

 It`s apparent that the students at the Oakdale Elementary School here in Dedham, learn a great deal more than “reading, writing and arithmetic.”

 This is Principal Holli Armstrong`s ninth year at the school, and she continues to teach the boys and girls in grades 1-5 a sense of community involvement and moral commitment. Early on in each school year, Principal Armstrong  leads an assembly and stresses the importance of good behavior and comradery.

 Team Building days and Community Projects follow, and a Student Council is elected from her fifth grade class. It is an important part of each child`s “education” to develop a sense of awareness – even at this young age – that they can carry with them as they grow! Each year the student council is responsible for “getting the word out” on various events at the school and for having the dedication and follow through to see them completed.

 This year has been no different. During the month of November, the students at Oakdale participated in an annual food drive. With the help of Oakdale School Nurse, Sue Healy, local families in need are lined up to receive a Thanksgiving Basket from the school. This year the folks at the Dedham Youth Commission joined in and almost a dozen “complete” Thanksgiving dinners were put together.

 Thanks to the generosity of the Oakdale families involved, there was an abundance of non-perishable food items, all of which was donated to the Dedham Food Pantry. In addition to the food drive, a special “side collection” took place for SPC Derek Temmallo and his platoon, stationed this holiday season over in Afghanistan. Dozens upon dozens of “goodies” from home – including snacks, food items, games, and personal needs will be sent to the troops.

 We`re told that plans are “underway” for the school`s 2nd Annual Toy Drive for the Home for Little Wanderers, along with their Annual “Caroling for Coins” fundraiser for the 4C`s here in Town. These are just a few of things that Principal Armstrong, her teachers and her students are planning over the coming weeks!

 As these Oakdale Elementary children continue to grow and travel through our school system, they will be the ones that take a great deal of pride – not only in themselves, but in our Community!

Story and Photo by: Joe Kilroy

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