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Sunday, May 1, 2016

Magical moments

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Cumberland Academy junior and senior students (from left) Chrissie Wetnight, April Knox, David Owen and Kyle Jasper enjoy a dinner prior to attending their prom Friday. [Order this photo]
* Cumberland students have prom

Prom is a night about making memories.

For some students, it was about spending time with family.

"The idea started because a senior needed a dress," Cumberland Academy teacher Michelle Tracy said. "Then we found out there were other students who wanted to go but couldn't afford it."

The staff at Cumberland Academy came together Friday evening to give their students a night they could remember.

"We took donations for the tuxedos, flowers, dresses and dinner," counselor Andrea Herbert said. "The hair dressers volunteered to do the girls' hair."

There was a photographer on hand to provide students with an affordable picture package and Cumberland Academy faculty and the staff prepared dinner.

"I'm really excited and thankful," student April Knox said. "If it wasn't for them, then we wouldn't have this."

Knox, a senior who will be graduating in May, plans to study social work at Ivy Tech Community College. However, she admitted leaving Cumberland will be difficult.

"The staff is amazing," she said. "We are like a family. They go above and beyond everyday. Without them, I wouldn't graduate."

As the students walked into the cafeteria area, they were greeted by their teachers and principal. The lighting was changed and flowers adjourned any available surface.

"All the students really appreciate all the work that has gone into this," Principal Lisa Showalter said.

The family environment at Cumberland is what made the evening so special to the students.

"These students are very unique, they wanted to come and have dinner with the teachers," Showalter said. "The staff did not have to work today and yet, they came in and did all of this work for the students."

As dinner began to start, the staff remarked on the changes in all of the students as they walked in.

"They haven't stopped smiling," Herbert said. "They all look wonderful."

Other organizations helping make the evening special included Fiesta Hair Salon, I Do Rentals, Kelsey Trout and Melissa Cayton, and North Clay Middle School for the use of the cafeteria, as well as monetary donations.

"Everyone here really cares about us," Knox said of the staff. "They are really amazing."

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This is wonderful! I am so glad they helped these kids. These things are so important to them and I am glad someone helped them in these rough financial times.

-- Posted by petmonster on Mon, Apr 19, 2010, at 8:17 AM

Such a beautiful story and a night that will be remembered forever by these lovely young people.

May those who contributed time, money or support be blessed always.

-- Posted by JaniLou on Mon, Apr 19, 2010, at 11:13 AM

More schools should follow their lead.

-- Posted by indianamama on Mon, Apr 19, 2010, at 11:40 AM

Most school systems don't have a reformatory school like this, so I guess they are lucky in that regard.

-- Posted by Mrs. Positive on Tue, Apr 20, 2010, at 3:16 PM

Cumberland Academy is not what I consider a "reformatory" school, that would be the Indiana Boys' and Girls' Schools that delinquent students are sentenced to by a court of law. Many of the students attending Cumberland have faced the option of just quitting. They choose to attend Cumberland and finish school due to circumstances that precluded their attendance of our traditional high schools. It is an alternative to the traditional school. Students transfer from both Northview and Clay City High School, if I am not mistaken, instead of dropping out of school altogether. If they did not have this unique school environment to go into, it would adversely affect the graduation rates of both of our high schools.

-- Posted by Leo L. Southworth on Tue, Apr 20, 2010, at 5:28 PM

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