Ascension Public Schools gave back to the community for Thanksgiving

Marlie Lynch, Special to the Weekly Citizen, The Chief
The G.W. Carver Primary 4-H club hosted a class competition food drive. Mrs. Palmer's class won the competition with 1,475 donated items.

Ascension Public Schools put the “giving” in Thanksgiving this year by hosting and participating in events to help those in need such as canned food drives and more. Beta, 4-H, FFA, and FCA clubs at most schools organized drives to collect goods from students.

While everyone celebrated Thanksgiving Dinner with family and friends this year, the schools and clubs stayed busy collecting and counting goods to give to organizations such as St. Jude, Knights of Columbus, Magnolia Assisted Living, local food pantries, supply drives and local churches, among others.

“It is so impressive that our students are exhibiting our district’s core values of teamwork, leadership, service and learning through organizing these drives and giving to those in need,” said Superintendent David Alexander. “We know that this helps them experience more than just school and more than being just good in academics. These experiences raise awareness about the value of contributing to those around them. Hats off to these students and the adults that support and lead them to pursue these heartwarming and worthy activities that ultimately enhance the lives of others.”

Donaldsonville High School Feeder Schools

Donaldsonville Primary kindergartners invited parents and grandparents to Thanksgiving Dinner. Lowery Elementary students participated in Girls on the Run, a learning program for young girls, while the 4-H club hosted a canned food drive for a local church in Donaldsonville. Lowery Middle worked with local stakeholders to adopt families in need.

Donaldsonville High Beta and Tiger-to-Tiger clubs participated in the annual Donaldsonville Downtown Development District Avenue Stroll for community service hours. Students helped out at the ticket booth, organized lines for Santa pictures and kiddie rides and dressed as cartoon characters to take photos with the children.

Dutchtown High School Feeder Schools

Dutchtown Primary advertised a new sock donation for St. Jude which occurred Nov. 26 through Nov. 30. Oak Grove Primary students participated in a Yankee Candle Fundraiser on Nov. 16. Prairieville Primary teachers held their annual Turkey Trot. Spanish Lake Primary 4-H Club directed a canned food drive.

Prairieville Middle collected 3,000 essential items to be delivered to police officers affected by Hurricane Michael in Panama City, FL. Dutchtown Middle 4-H club held a canned food drive for the needy.

Dutchtown High School Agriculture students and FFA members donated 3,771 cans to the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank.

East Ascension High School Feeder Schools

Central Primary Junior Beta Club collected 2,691 food items in a free dress down contest. Gonzales Primary 4-H hosted the Ronald McDonald House Supply Drive.

Duplessis Primary School Beta Club held a canned food drive for Our Lady of Holy Rosary Catholic Church and their food pantry. Pecan Grove Primary 4-H Club sponsored a life-saver collection and delivered over 500 lifesaver rolls to local police and fire stations, as well as overseas to soldiers. 

G.W. Carver Primary 4-H hosted a food drive where each class competed to bring the highest number of food items. Mrs. Palmer’s class donated 1,475 items, winning the competition. One of her students took this to the next level and donated over 900 canned goods. The food items were donated to St. Theresa’s food pantry and the Fellowship Center in Gonzales.

Central Middle administrators made sure to give thanks to their staff this year by providing hot chocolate for them in the chilly weather, while 4-H students participated in “Real Life Superheroes Serving Others,” a food drive benefiting the First United Methodist Church of Gonzales Food Pantry.

Gonzales Middle's (GoMS) Junior Beta Club donated canned goods to the St. Theresa Food Pantry. Along with their food drive, GoMS students created Thanksgiving cards for residents of Magnolia Assisted Living and Shirley Lewis and St. Landry United Methodist Church participated in a November gift card donation.

East Ascension High held a food drive competition between classes. EA also partnered with the Louisiana Probation and Parole Officers Association to adopt several families in need, and the Fellowship of Christian Students read to pre-k, kindergarten, and first grade classes at Pecan Grove Primary.

St. Amant High School Feeder Schools

Galvez Primary 4-H held a canned food drive for Carpenter’s Chapel Food Pantry. Lake Elementary 4-H donated 61 boxes containing 3,294 items, according to the Lake Elementary Lion’s Pride Facebook page.

Sorrento Primary 4-H sent more than 500 canned goods to the Knights of Columbus Food Pantry. Lakeside Primary collected 1,972 items for the St. Amant Knights of Columbus (#6389) and distributed goods to local citizens. St. Amant Primary 4-H and Beta club collected enough food to make 35 baskets to feed families in our community.

Galvez Middle contributed to local food banks by arranging canned goods for admissions into their Talent Show on Nov. 16. St. Amant Middle Beta Club did a school-wide food drive and collected a little over 1,000 cans for the Knights of Columbus.

St. Amant High School FCA successfully collected goods for Operation Christmas Child, the FFA collected 971 pounds of food for the Catholic Daughters Association with Holy Rosary Church, and the school hosted a community wide can food drive that collected over 1,200 pounds of food for families in need at St. Amant High.

Last but not least, Early College Option for Ascension Public Schools collected food items for those in need and created baskets of goods for families.

For more information about Ascension Public Schools, visit