There was magic in the mountains last Friday morning when a nine-year-old girl announced the earnings of her summer lemonade stand at her school’s first assembly. Chloe Crawford, 4th grade student at Summit Charter School, a public charter school in Cashiers, North Carolina, worked 3-4 days a week, six hours a day at her family’s Farmer’s Market to earn money for her school. Students, teachers, staff, local supporters, and parents gather every Monday and Friday in the atrium at this unique school in the mountains to report on the week’s progress and ask questions.
Chloe’s dad, Josh Crawford, was introduced by the head of school, Danny Howell. Mr. Crawford said, “These 40 kids who surround Chloe today gave up swimming at the lake and other fun stuff to take their shift selling lemonade.” At that point a little girl with white-blonde hair jumped out of the middle of the crowd of children and squealed, “I love selling lemonade!”
“It’s all about giving,” he continued, “and how good we feel when we give.” He asked his daughter Chloe, “Why did you do this?” “For our future,” she replied. He asked again, and she replied louder. He asked a third time and 40 kids shouted in unison, “FOR OUR FUTURE!” They pulled down the sign that was covering the check they brought and there it was …
Someone in the back said, “That’s a lot of lemons!”
The crowd went crazy. Everybody jumping, crying, hugging. Then a blood curdling whistle broke through the noise and a grandmother stood up and said, “I have two grandsons in this school and I appreciate what Chloe did, so I am going to match it dollar for dollar!”
Again, shouting, jumping, and crying.
Another voice shouted, “That’s too close to $100,000 to walk away. I’ll make up the difference to get it to $100,000!”
Summit Charter School is a K-8 public charter school among the top 10% of schools in North Carolina. Summit students live by a pledge they learn in kindergarten and say every day: “Each day in my words and my deeds, I will do my best to live these seven virtues: Honesty, Respect, Responsibility, Compassion, Self-Discipline, Perseverance, and Giving.”