CROWN POINT - A pair of Crown Point educators will lace 'em up for their students.
Principal Elaine Dixon and teacher Crystal Farrell of Crown Point Central School will compete in the Marine Corps Marathon and 10K road races in Washington, D.C., Oct. 31.
They will be part of Team CFES, raising money for the College For Every Student program at their school.
Dixon will run the 26.2-mile marathon, while Farrell will run the 6.2-mile 10K race.
CFES is a nonprofit organization committed to helping disadvantaged youth gain access to and succeed in college. About half of Crown Point's 250 students come from low-income families.
Dixon is running her second consecutive Marine Corps Marathon for Team CFES, hoping to build on last year's fundraising success and maybe even shave a few minutes off her time.
Family, friends, co-workers and area businesses kicked in more than $1,500 last year to sponsor her marathon debut.
Last year's marathon training was particularly grueling for Dixon. In addition to cranking out the mileage needed to sustain her race-day effort, Dixon was taking courses to earn her certification of advanced study. Determined to succeed on both tracks, she took to the roads at 4:30 a.m., headlamp lighting the way, to complete her training runs before the start of the school day.
The money raised by Team CFES goes directly to CFES Scholars. The funds cover things like books for college, college deposits, transportation to campus and other expenses that, for a low-income family, can represent an insurmountable obstacle.
Farrell, is in her fifth year at Crown Point as a special education and reading teacher. She accompanied Dixon to Washington last year to support her marathon effort and became hooked.
"I thought if Elaine can run and raise CFES funds to impact our students, wouldn't it be even more impacting if I joined her," Farrell said. "The only choice was to run.
"CFES is an important part of our school community," she added. "Through this program we have been able to include all of our students, pre-K through 12th graders, as CFES Scholars. It's important to me because I have seen the impact that the CFES program has had on our students and staff.
"Through CFES, students are part of mentoring, community service, leadership, and pathways to college, beginning as young as 4 years old," Farrell said. "CFES provides students with options, options they may not have thought they would have before being a part of CFES."
Farrell said running 10 kilometers is a small effort compared to what happens at Crown Point Central School.
"Crown Point Central School is a community of students, staff and parents who are all striving to bring as many benefits to our students as possible," she said. "If all I have to do is run to add to the benefits, run I shall."