Gorman-Rupp is continuing a long-standing tradition of support for Mansfield City Schools by renewing a program to benefit students at Sherman Elementary School.
The Mansfield company, one of the world’s largest pump manufacturers, has budgeted $5,000 to provide tutoring, student-of-the-month lunches, positive behavior rewards and other support during the current school year. But it’s not just money; it’s employees who volunteer to help kids.
Before Sherman, Gorman Rupp had provided similar support to the now-gone Newman Elementary School.
So how long has the company been involved with Mansfield City Schools? “I’ve been here 26 years and it started before that. I’d say at least 30 years,” said Renee Nastasi of Gorman-Rupp’s sales department, who administers the support budget.
Sherman principal Michael Brennan said Gorman-Rupp’s contributions enhance classroom instruction by helping struggling readers reach their potential and recognizing students of the month for their good deeds. “And Gorman-Rupp recognizes the positive behavior of students throughout the school,” Brennan said. “The company’s contributions support students who exemplify ‘Sherman’s High Five’ by being Respectful, Responsible, Ready, Safe and Proud.”
Starting September 25, a group of 11 Gorman-Rupp volunteers will again visit Sherman each Tuesday to tutor second- and third-graders in reading, writing and spelling as part of the Project MORE program. Teachers refer students who need extra help to the 30-minute sessions from 11:30 AM to 12 PM and 12 PM to 12:30 PM.
As often as possible, a student is paired with the same volunteer. While emphasizing academic improvement, the tutoring also builds self-confidence.
Angela Eyerly of the company’s engineering department is a veteran Project MORE volunteer. “I enjoy mentoring a child, building a relationship with them,” she said. “I let them know they are important and I encourage them to believe they can do anything they put their minds to.”
Trent Miller of Gorman-Rupp’s sales department also has tutored at Sherman. “We are supporting our community and Sherman specifically,” Miller said. “We depend on our schools to have a workforce coming up. Reading and writing are very important. Some kids need extra help. It’s nice that Gorman-Rupp allows us to participate in providing that help. As a sub tutor I have worked with a variety of kids with different reading levels. I try to find the needs of every kid. Over time, you know you’ve made a difference. It’s very satisfying.”
Huffman said tutoring volunteers include both factory and office workers.
Joining Eyerly and Huffman as fulltime volunteer tutors are Gretchen Sutter, Valerie Yoder, Hannah Price, Brian Judd, Laurie Leedy, Leah Fedorchak, Chris Sackman and Jeff Lunsford.
With Miller on the substitute list are Brigette Burnell, Angie Morehead, Susie Beckwith, Rachelle Cundiff and Monique Wentz.
Sherman kids will arrive by bus for student-of-the-month luncheons in the Gorman-Rupp cafeteria.
“Renee will coordinate with our cafeteria staff for pizza, ice cream, etc.,” Huffman said. “We will have about 20 kids each month. While they are here they will color pictures that we will hang on the cafeteria wall.”
Gorman-Rupp also will provide a weekly Junior Achievement teaching packet to Sherman staff in a program coordinated by Sherri Massie.
“It’s something like Monopoly. It teaches about money and occupations,” Miller said.
Brennan reiterated the Sherman staff’s gratitude. “It is comforting to know that businesses like Gorman-Rupp are in the community and are committed to helping and teaching students beyond the classroom.”
In the photo above, Gorman-Rupp employees involved in the support of Sherman Elementary School include, from left, Angela Eyerly of the engineering department; Lisa Huffman, purchasing; Renee Nastasi, sales, and Trent Miller, sales.
Source, Photo: Mansfield City Schools