Some lucky Columbia County pupils earned more than certificates last week for perfect attendance or good grades. Some received new bicycles.
Twelve pupils at Westmont Elementary School and more than 30 pupils at Grovetown Elementary received the bikes during special assemblies Wednesday and Thursday.
At Westmont Elementary, the names of pupils with perfect attendance or scoring all A's were drawn from a jar to receive a bicycle.
Among the winners were fourth-graders Christian Leep and Gabby Rumaker.
"I have a bike, but it's kind of rusty," Christian said as he stood beside his red Next bicycle. "This is great. I'll ride it all the time."
Gabby now has a pink bike she won in the drawing and a purple bike she already had.
"I don't know what I'm going to do," the 10-year-old said. "I guess I'll take turns riding them."
The bikes were donated to the schools by Vista Landscaping LLC.
Barbara Miller, the wife of Vista Landscaping owner Robert Miller, said she contacted the school system three years ago to ask what she can do to help.
"I specifically said that I didn't want to donate money for a teacher or some event," Miller said. "I told them I wanted to do something that would help students."
School officials put her in touch with Grovetown Elementary Principal Bob Boyd, who came up with the idea of a bicycle giveaway as a reward for high-performing pupils.
Miller said she expanded the scope of the bicycle giveaway to Westmont Elementary this year because her four grandchildren attend the school.
Next year, she hopes to include Cedar Ridge Elementary, where her daughter is a special-needs teacher.
Pupils often receive rewards from business partners, but they usually come in the form of a coupon, Westmont Elementary Principal Tami Flowers said.
"Winning something like a bicycle is such a great reinforcer for their hard work," Flowers said.
The Columbia County News-Times ©2013. All Rights Reserved.