The Benavente Middle School parent-teacher organization had a concern for the safety of our school aides who man the front gate in a rickety shack held up with pallets so we started a project to replace or rebuild it. This led to a suggestion from Rosan Fernando to source a replacement from either the commercial port or the airport. Roe-Ann Cruz made a few calls to the A.B. Won Pat Guam International Airport Authority and GIAA's Executive Manager Tom Ada responded. After finding a suitable structure, then working with the General Services Agency to have the structure reassigned to BMS, GIAA went a step beyond and transported the structure to BMS where Mr. Leon Guerrero and his crew from GDOE maintenance put it on the ground. Now our school aides have a safe, dry shelter where they monitor visitors to our school. And, finally, putting the finishing touches on the hut, Jenn Torre cleaned the surfaces and painted the trim to give it the BMS look.

The PTO would like to thank everyone for the teamwork involved in making this happen. It is a testament to what can happen when concern for our students and school turns into action. And we are really hoping this continues to other PTO projects. Building covered walkways to keep our students and staff dry can be easily accomplished, even using just recycled materials. Setting benches around the campus to get the students off the dog-soiled ground can also be easily accomplished with recycled materials. We should give our students athletic/recreational equipment to keep the students occupied during lunch and recess. We also need to make sure our awesome teachers and staff have everything they need to ensure our students are well-prepared for high school. This should not be negotiable! Bringing back JP Torres Alternative School would do wonders to help.

Providing our students and staff a safe and positive environment to learn should be a priority for us all, and the actions of those who make this happen should inspire us to do more. You can help by giving us any material we can use to improve the campus. We could also use volunteers to finish painting the school, and a bucket truck to reach the second story trim.

Renew, reduce, recycle.

Gary Kuper is a team member of Benavente Middle School's parent-teacher organization.

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