When second grader Tara Sanker was diagnosed with brain cancer, the staff and faculty at Lees Corner Elementary School got ready to help her through her journey. The first milestone was the day she came into school with a shaved head. Some younger students were confused about the changes Sanker was going through and made some comments and observations that were inadvertently hurtful. Tara’s mom Tammy Sanker, Principal Robert D’Amato and Tara’s teacher Vicki McGorty felt the best way to help Tara was to share her story with the students at Lees Corner Elementary School during the morning news program.
D’Amato, math resource teacher Josh Douds and Special Education IA Ashley Kappatos decided to go a step further — they let Tara cut their hair. Tara cut 10 inches off Kappatos’ head to be donated to Locks of Love and she shaved D’Amato and Douds — all in front of the student body during the morning news program on April 18.
“We wanted to share her story with the students and educate everyone in the building. We wanted to make sure Tara didn’t feel alone,” said D’Amato.
The impact of the effort was dramatic and instantaneous, according to D’Amato. Students, staff and faculty are reaching out to Tara in a variety of ways.
“We’re doing everything we can to support her,” D’Amato said.