Staff celebrates before holiday break


Caitlin McKeand, Co-Editor in Chief

The faculty has the opportunity to participate in 12 Days to the Holidays, a 12-day event where staff are presented with multiple fun things to do before the Christmas break from Dec. 4-19. Unlimited coffee and cocoa, choir singing carols, getting a picture with Santa and a tacky sweater contest are among some of the activities planned. There will also be prizes awarded to contest days.

Anatomy and Physiology teacher Karen Pearce said it was a pleasant surprise getting the announcement from the assistant principal.

“I loved the idea and was very excited because it’s a good distraction away from the stresses of midterms,” Pearce said. “It’s only been a few days, but I have noticed a change in teachers attitudes. I think overall, at lunchtime, it gives [teachers] something to talk about and it’s lighthearted, so it’s been a good change.”

This is the first year Vandegrift has put on the celebration, and Pearce said it reminded her of when she worked at Rouse and they did something similar.

“We had Santa and a couple of other things that just lightened up the mood during midterms,” Pearce said. “I always thought it was really nice and I enjoyed it. I absolutely hope they keep doing this for years to come.”

Pearce said the celebrations made her feel all giddy again and is enjoying herself.

“I’m excited about finding the hidden elves and I have enjoyed way too much cocoa today,” Pearce said. “I’m also looking forward to the tacky sweater contest, but my sweater is not tacky, it’s just lovely.”

The idea behind 12 Days to the Holidays was to create a merry and fun atmosphere for teachers and staff.

“We brainstormed ideas that would be fun, holiday-themed, some competitiveness, ideas that we could afford or get donations for and so forth,” Associate Principal Wendy Studevant said. “We just wanted to celebrate and find the joy in the season as we finish the first semester. We may make it an annual event because everyone seems to be enjoying it!”

Studevant said she is looking forward to the day Santa comes to visit.

“We hope the teachers just have fun,” Studevant said. “We want everyone to enjoy the spirit and hope it brings even more smiles around Vandegrift.”

Senior Sydney Levine will be one of the choir students performing during PIT and both lunches for students and teachers alike on Monday.

“I’m very excited to perform,” Levine said. “I’m looking forward to singing my last carols with the Vandegrift Choir for our students and staff!”