$25,000: District 3 supervisor provides funds for PHS project

By CALEB MCCLUSKEY,

The Petal High School student ambassadors want to make their school more beautiful and safe for students on campus with an Outdoor Assembly Project. 

During the June 3 meeting of the Forrest County Board of Supervisors, District 3 Supervisor Burkett Ross presented a check for $25,000 to fund the project.

The ambassadors, sponsored by the Petal Education Foundation and the Petal Area Chamber of Commerce, are a group of students (juniors and seniors) who engage in on- and off-campus events to promote the school district to visitors, business partners, alumni, students and families both current and prospective, as well as participate in service projects that support the district’s mission statement.

Ross said the 30 student ambassadors are the best of the best, and that he is very proud of their hard work.

“(This is) the project they want to do to leave a lasting impression on their years at Petal High School,” he said. “With this board’s blessing, I want to sponsor this project because it is worthwhile, wonderful.”

The project, which was unanimously approved by the board, aims to add a plaza and outdoor area where students can socialize before and after class.

“We (the Ambassadors) are well known for our community service and dedication to our school as well as to Petal,” said Jericho Gardner, a senior at PHS. “We love to help out everyone, and we think this is probably one of our biggest and most helpful projects.”

The 17-year-old ambassador said the main issue is the grounds around Petal High are rugged and do not represent the school well. The project has two phases: Building a plaza and beautification for the first phase, and for the second phase renovating the bus pickup area with trees, foliage and benches.

“We are No. 1 in the state, and we want to show it,” Gardner said. “We believe this representation of us is not good, and we want to beautify it.”

He said with the proposed plaza, students are hidden behind the main buildings of the school, which he and his classmates believe will provide a safer environment.

The second phase of the project involves the pickup and dropoff area for PHS buses. Ambassadors want to add trees along the road for the buses to follow.

Tom Eaves and Sally Hughes at Landarc Consulted helped with the design and Allen Flynt helped with the surveying.

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