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Pioneer Elementary needs votes, votes, and more votes to win grant for school security items

Pioneer Elementary School students gather in front of the school on Tuesday, urging residents to support Pioneer’s bid to win a grant in a national online competition. - Robert Whale/Auburn Reporter
Pioneer Elementary School students gather in front of the school on Tuesday, urging residents to support Pioneer’s bid to win a grant in a national online competition.
— image credit: Robert Whale/Auburn Reporter

A national contest is kicking up a bodaciously big buzz these days at Pioneer Elementary School on Auburn's south side.

For weeks students and teachers and administrators have been hitting up everybody they know to text or vote online for the elementary school.

And word has seeped out to the community at large.

So what's the chatter all about?

Only that Stanley Security has a grant contest going, that's all, and the school with the most votes wins a grand prize of $200,000 in Stanley Security-installed products and services. What's more, the three runners-up win individual prizes of $100,000 in Stanley Security-installed stuff and services.

Each vote for the school counts as an entry for it to get daily prizes. The way to win is to get votes via texting or online voting.

Pioneer is in it alongside 969 other schools, including Auburn's Mt. Baker Middle School. Pioneer, a decided underdog to all the big-dog secondary schools across the country with their big, bad voting bases, is in fifth place as of this afternoon.

Fourth place, that is, with an eye to moving up.

For everybody at the 54-year-old school, this contest is a really, really big deal.

"The anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting is coming up and our minds are on child safety," said Principal Debra Gary. "What we're thinking of is we want new locks for the doors and the ability to lock the school down remotely, and possibly get key card access, among other things."

Given that the contest ends Friday, Dec. 13, time is running out.

"There's not the money in the state or district to dedicate to this. I'm an elementary school principal, I saw this contest and rallied staff and everybody to go for it. I don't know why others are doing it, but I want to keep kids safe. We're having so much fun. The staff is being silly.

"... We've got voters in Europe and Japan and Brazil and the Philippines," Gary added. "Everyone is reaching out to family in the contest."

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Cast your vote

Two Auburn schools – Pioneer Elementary and Mt. Baker Middle School – are in the running for the Stanley Security Safer Schools grant. Pioneer was in fourth place in nationwide online voting as of today. To vote, visit www.stanleysaferschools.com (look for the logo “Touch Their Heart”) or Text “Pioneer, WA” to 99222.  People can vote online until Friday, Dec. 13.

 

 

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