Morning Star Students Clean Up Campus

In an effort to clean up its campus and teach students some important lessons, Morning Star School held its annual Spring Clean-up Thursday, April 4.

Third-graders Abby and Nehemiah plant flowers near the playground (photo by St. Augustine Catholic/Savanna Kearney)

The clean-up, which included students from all grade levels, involved raking leaves, pulling weeds, planting flowers, laying mulch and more. Morning Star only has one person on its maintenance staff, which is why they teach the students to be responsible for the beauty, safety and cleanliness of their school campus.

According to Jean Barnes, principal of Morning Star, this school-wide event is an opportunity for students to combine faith and environmental science.

“In all the classes, we work to tie into the pope’s encyclical on caring for the earth as part of God’s creation. So, it really supports the religion curriculum and the science curriculum,” said Barnes.

Not only do students clean up the landscape, but they also plant fruits and vegetables in a garden, which they later harvest and eat.

Ninth-grader Camron helps trim trees and dispose of the debris in school’s Peace Garden. (photo by St. Augustine Catholic/Savanna Kearney)

“The kids are so involved,” said Barnes “They’re very excited about it. They all look forward to it and they’ve gotten so much better at the physical aspects of it as well as improving their knowledge about it.”

But the kids aren’t the only ones cleaning up Morning Star’s campus. Parents and friends of Morning Star are pitching in by donating mulch, pine straw and other tools. There will also be a volunteer-driven clean up to help finish up the project on Saturday, April 13 from 8 to 11 a.m. All are welcome.

“It’s important to instill a sense of responsibility – you know, this is your school, you’re responsible for it. And then, this is our earth which we share with the world, and so we’re all responsible for that,” said Barnes.

For more information, email development@morningstar-jax.org.