It all started with a request for “no gifts” to his bus drivers, but little did he know that his simple request would end up blessing twelve families. Jon Doss, Transportation Coordinator for Mount Airy City Schools, asked his bus drivers to skip a gift for him this year. His drivers took it upon themselves to collect money and work toward sponsoring a student and their family instead. When Doss learned of this he talked with bus drivers and the group decided to serve a student from the elementary routes and one from the middle and high school routes. With the goal of sponsoring two students in mind, each driver randomly selected a student from their bus and submitted names to Doss who would then draw two students from the pool.
Doss shared the idea and plan with Jason Dorsett, Chief Operations Officer. Dorsett then worked with the district to match the money collected by the bus drivers. This allowed the idea to grow from two families to one family per bus. Mount Airy City Schools has 12 buses in its fleet which means 12 students and families were able to be sponsored.
Dorsett noted, "Mount Airy City Schools has a wonderful history of helping others. All across our district employees are seeking ways to offer a helping hand and I am extremely proud of Mr. Doss and our team of bus drivers."
Doss teamed with the schools’ guidance counselors to determine how many members were in each family. Special attention was given to ensure that families both large and small were provided appropriate-sized meals. Arrangements were made with Wal-Mart to prepare cooked meals with all the fixings.
Bus drivers were kept in the dark as the idea blossomed. The plan was to reveal the two families to be sponsored during the annual holiday lunch for drivers on the last day of school. This is when Doss revealed that not two but 12 families were going to be sponsored due to the bus drivers generosity and match of the district. Drivers were thrilled to learn of the new plan and eager to put it in motion. Following lunch the drivers went to Wal-Mart and picked up the 12 prepared meals. Drivers then delivered the meals to each family, who were also surprised by the day’s events.
When she learned of the efforts taken by her staff Dr. Kim Morrison, Superintendent, stated, “Our district takes seriously the motto to Lead and Innovate to Serve. Our bus drivers have gone above and beyond again to serve our students. We are proud of their heart and know that this shows what is great about Mount Airy City Schools”