WESTFIELD – Southampton Road third grade teacher Joanne Hewins wanted to do something special for her class on the last day of school.
Hewins organized an end-of-year drive-by celebration for class 3H. She contacted Jenni Naves, the owner of Domino’s Pizza in Westfield, who donated 24 individual pizzas, one for each student, and Hewins made t-shirts to celebrate. Hewins said she was grateful for the generous donation, and the students were excited.
“Almost everybody was able to participate. I just missed them so much. It was nice to see them, but it was sad to see them go,” Hewins said, adding, “They were really excited about seeing myself and getting the pizza. There were some tears. It was such a strange year and a strange way to say goodbye.”
Hewins said the end of the year is so much fun for the kids, and she regretted that the students missed all the fun activities and lessons that the teachers save for the end of the year. “But we tried our best at home,” she said.
Hewins said she is hopeful that the students will return to school in the fall. She said it was difficult to teach the kids remotely, but since the teachers knew them, they knew who might need an extra phone call or some extra encouragement. “Trying to teach kids we don’t know yet is going to be extremely difficult,” she said, adding that she is hopeful the plans that are made will be in everybody’s best interest.