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Port Orange Observer Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2017 1 week ago

Port Orange firefighters spend their lunch break with children at Cypress Creek Elementary

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The lunch was part of the Port Orange Fire Department's Adopt-A-Class program.
by: Nichole Osinski Staff Writer

Kindergartners at Cypress Creek Elementary had a fun surprise waiting for them when it was time for lunch on Wednesday, Nov. 8. 

Three Port Orange firefighters had come by the school to have lunch with the students as a part of the fire department's new Adopt-A-Class program. Lieutenant Danny Crocker, Driver Engineer Billy Newborn and Firefighter Ricardo Francois from Station 74 were waiting for students as they came into the lunchroom. 

Lunch with the firefighters was spent talking about a little bit of everything, from Halloween candy to what the students were learning in class, according to Jordan Guido, emergency management coordinator and public education specialist. A few milk cartons were even opened thanks to the firefighters. 

"The students are always excited when the fire department comes into school," Guido said. I think having a few repeat visits and getting to see the same members has been really fun for them and I it think really cool to build that relationship and trust with the fire department."

"The students are always excited when the fire department comes into school" Jordan Guido, emergency management coordinator and public education specialis

The Adopt-A-Class program first began on Wednesday, Oct. 18, when firefighters stopped by the school to talk with around 100 students about about different kinds of fires, firefighting gear and how to stop, drop and roll.

Guido spent the summer working on the program, which was inspired by similar initiatives at fire departments in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, where she used to work, and Illinois, where Fire Chief Ken Fustin is from. 

Throughout the program, crews will follow the students from kindergarten to fifth grade with two structured presentations each year along with other drop-in visits. The two presentations will take place in the fall and spring. 

Guido said that so far, Cypress Creek Elementary is the only school that has opted to take part in the program. However, Guido explained they are hoping to get more schools involved.   

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