It took less than an hour for the 452 students of St. Jean Vianney Catholic School to affix their principal, Wendy Ross, to a wall facing a courtyard Oct. 24.
Surrounded by children from every grade at the school, Ross stood patiently on a stool as, one by one, each student picked a piece of brightly colored duct tape, and added it to the mix.
“We were talking about doing a fundraiser and did some research on things that would appeal to the students,” said Katie Jeter, a teacher at the school. “This stood out as a popular choice,” she said.
The fundraiser was effective, as well, raising $30,000 that will be contributed to the school’s building fund. The school hopes to break ground on a new school gymnasium soon, Jeter said.
Once all the duct tape had been added, Ross stood tensely while teachers removed the stool from under her feet.
Everyone in the courtyard, including Ross, erupted into cheers when the tape held, and Ross wiggled her feet, suspended above the ground.
Then the students filed by Ross a second time, this time giving her a high-five.
“Not too hard! Not too hard!” Ross said, as the courtyard slowly emptied, and the teachers extracted Ross from her web.
“I’ll have to figure out something to do with this,” she said, holding up the mold of herself in duct tape.