[UPDATE Friday] Thieves Break in and Steal $3000 Stash of Quarters From Students at Small School
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We at Casterlin School are sick. Not the kind of sick that can be cured at the doctor’s office or with some chicken soup.
The parents and communities of Alderpoint, Blocksburg, and Kettenpom areas work TIRELESSLY to raise enough money to support the school, providing enrichment classes, field trips, materials, and the third teacher. Money is tight, and everyone’s hard work and energy in putting on events, as well as those who support our events, are always appreciated.
When we came to school on Monday, we noticed some things weren’t quite right: the gate had been opened during the weekend, a lock was missing, the “haunted house” doors were ajar, someone had attempted to open the janitor’s closet, other outbuildings had been either broken open or the attempt was made.
Then, the bus driver parked the bus and got in the van to continue her route, and all the gas had been siphoned from it. She barely had enough fumes to get to Alderpoint, where a family member helped her. Something was very wrong, the van had been full of fuel on Thursday.
Then we checked the Friends of Casterlin School (FOCS) storage container, and the lock was broken. A very successful “Quarter Craze” was held at the school recently, organized by FOCS and run completely by parent volunteers. After the event, students helped count and roll $3,000 in quarters. It was such a success that there was talk about having another Quarter Craze event in the upcoming months. With our school being more than an hour away from any bank, the decision was made to keep the quarters on hand – it would be easier that way. The quarters were stored, innocently enough, in buckets in the container.
When we looked, the one missing item from the shed was the quarters. We have heard of many people spending rolls of quarters at some local stores, and we have heard ideas about who has stolen the money.
The theft is a theft of not only money, but also of dreams, plans, and hopes. The money was not taken from adults, but from our students. Adults often comment, “oh, the Lip Sync was my favorite event,” “the Friday Night Live is awesome,” “that was always my favorite field trip,” or “I love the Easter Basket hunt.” Unfortunately, those are the events that will be hurt by the theft.
Yes, the Sheriff was called, Deputy Del Biaggio came to school to get information. Yes, we have learned our lesson, to those of you who are asking why anyone thought keeping $3,000 at school was a good idea.
Stealing from children is wrong, and it makes us sick. If anyone can find a way to help us recover our loss, the violation will still be fresh, but the harm will certainly be lessened.
Jennifer Kubik, Teacher in Charge
UPDATE Friday: Here is a way to donate if you would like to help.
Note: At the request of the author, some minor changes were made after the post was published.