MLK before-school celebration

By Amanda Tonoli


Parents, students, teachers and community members celebrated the day before the start of school at Martin Luther King Elementary.

A bounce house, free food, activities and more were available in the school’s gym Tuesday afternoon.

The celebration was one of many Youngstown City Schools hosted around the district to welcome students.

“It’s always great here at MLK,” said grandmother Donna Kasza. “The teachers just go above and beyond. It shows how much teachers care.”

Victoria Winphrey, Red Zone youth and adult behavioral health agency representative, said she enjoys seeing the teachers who care.

“MLK goes all out for their kids,” she said. “They do all kinds of stuff all year long. The staff is so loving and kind and very receptive to Red Zone services.”

Parent Jasmine Davis likes what MLK does for families.

“I just think it’s really nice – the appreciation they have for parents,” she said. “I feel like the programs they have and are offering to parents help us get ourselves involved, and it helps the kids, too, especially the after-school program.”

Joy Witte, seventh- and eighth-grade teacher, said it’s nice seeing students and parents in a more casual environment to help build relationships.

Kindergarten teacher Alex Abila was grateful for the connections the event provides.

“I like how we’re connecting with the community and building relationships with students that will last the entire school year,” Abila said.

Creating community connections is something school administration is seeking to do.

“We want to partner with the community and build those relationships,” said Jen Jones, seventh- and eighth-grade teacher.

Those wishing to get involved in community partnerships with the school can call MLK at 330-744-7823.

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