Mariner High hosts Spring Dance for students
Mariner High School hosted the second annual Spring Dance last week for all West Zone high school students taking part in life skills and functional skills classes.
Eighteen students from Ida Baker High School and 11 students from Island Coast High School attended the festivities with the Mariner High School students on May 5.
The students gathered around picnic tables and enjoyed pizza and sandwiches, along with a few deserts, before the dance.
Mariner High School teacher Carla Jerdan said she began the dance last year as an opportunity for the students.
“It is a great opportunity for them to attend a school dance and socialize with their peers,” Jerdan said.
Ida Baker High School teacher Lorraine Lacona agreed the Spring Dance offers a good opportunity to socialize.
Island Coast teacher Tammy Bayly agreed it also provides an opportunity to meet with students from other schools.
Bayly said the dance has encouraged her to start brainstorming events they could host at Island Coast, which she would like to do once each quarter.
Isaiah Sparks, a junior at Ida Baker, attended the dance for the second year this year. He said he enjoys the event because he can meet new friends and dance.
Jonathan Leon, also a junior at Ida Baker, said although he does not like to dance that much, he enjoyed listening to the music.
“I like watching people dance,” he said.
Leon said this year he made some new friends with the DJs.
Senior Heather Getty from Mariner High School spent the majority of the dance on the dance floor. She said she enjoyed the event because she likes the music and dancing, along with catching up with old friends.
The event was also successful due to four Mariner High School senior volunteers, who recently were nominated for May’s Do The Right Thing awards program.
PJ Banner said he helped make the juice, along with helping the students decorate the gym. He said after helping the participating students one day it sky rocketed and he has been helping in their classroom ever since. A few of the students have his phone number, so they can call him if they want to talk.
Banner said he also provides prizes to the students when they do not get too many points while in the classroom.
Volunteer Kenny Moore works with the students every day during physical education class and in their classroom.
Codie Parrish said she has been working with the students since her sophomore year. She said after she had a ceramics class with one of the students, it turned into a chain reaction of talking and working with many other kids.
“I enjoy their smiling faces and it makes me feel better,” Parrish said. “Anything we can do to help with their feelings is always a good thing.”
She said it has been a great experience for her.
Elizabeth Bruchers said she has been working with the students for the past four years, something she enjoys.
“They are always happy to see me,” Bruchers said.
Employment specialist with Mariner High School, Ida Baker High School, Island Coast High School and Cape Coral High School attended the event as well because she works with all the students on a weekly basis. She said she helps them find jobs and volunteer work, so they can obtain real life experiences.
“It’s awesome,” she said about the dance. It boosts all of their morale.”
Jerdan said she could not put on the dance without the help from Chick-fil-A, Jason’s Deli, IRagazzi Pizza, Walmart and Publix