For about 10 years, Suzye Farmer and Becki Saude have spearheaded an annual play for Fremont Elementary School in Antioch.
According to head custodian Jesse Wilkerson, the two kindergarten teachers work tirelessly putting in "endless hours directing these plays and allowing any student with an interest to participate. I've shed a tear more than once during these performances."
And because this dynamic duo works so unselfishly, Wilkerson decided to lead a production of this own. He decided that he and the staff needed to "recognize these two for all they have done and continue to do."
Under Wilkerson's direction, nearly $300 was secretly collected to buy each teacher a personalized director's chair.
During a recent school assembly, Saude and Farmer were surprised with the special gifts.
"They were shocked and grateful.
"These two gems, both veteran teachers with AUSD, are at every event -- not just their plays (but also) PTO events, cookies with Santa, dances, you name it.
"They can always be counted on to volunteer."
Wilkerson said he went above and beyond for the pair because "to me, they represent everything a teacher should be. It was my honor to honor them."
HANDS-ON LESSON: Some Riverview Middle School students took their civic lessons beyond the classroom and straight to the Contra Costa Board of Supervisors.
Juleena Augustin, Jazmin Cabrera, Javier Quezada and Laurie Quezada presented their findings on alcohol sales in the Martinez board chamber.
"I'm proud of these young people," said Supervisor Federal Glover. "They are the leaders of tomorrow."
According to a news release, the supervisors are set to vote on a resolution designating April as Alcohol Awareness Month.
It cites the students' study on the sale of alcopops, which are alcoholic drinks designed and marketed to young people.
In addition to the presentation, the Bay Point seventh-graders also held a town-hall meeting at the Ambrose Center.
They will also be a part of Glover's Youth Summit on May 3 at Los Medanos College in Pittsburg.
The students are members of the Friday Night Live club, led by Thania Balcorta of the Center for Human Development.
For more information, call 925-349-7341.
SING IT LOUD!: The 2014 East County Idol contest seemed to bring out the musical best with 17 finalists from 12 area high schools performing for an enthusiastic crowd at the El Campanil Theatre.
Hayley Finetti, a freshman at Liberty High, took the top honor and a $400 check for her rendition of "Don't Rain on My Parade." Second place and $200 went to Nicholas Crossen, an "American Idol" top 50 finalist and De La Salle Academy junior, who sang "Cry Me a River."
Third place and $100 went to Victoria Young, a 2012 East County Idol finalist and senior at Connections Academy, who sang "Feeling Good."
Walter Ruehlig, Antioch Music Foundation president, praised the performers. "It was a horse race and photo finish with the thinnest of margins separating the contestants. There seemed to be a top tier of six or seven, who particularly knocked the audience off their feet.
In truth, any of the 17 could have won and done the contest proud."
Ruehlig gave special kudos to Sharon Vela, the eight-year talent director, for running auditions, prepping the performers and putting together an engaging flow that "kept 350 people glued to their chairs for the program."
Vela is a retired Park Middle School band and choral director and current music teacher at Antioch Charter.
If you have school news to share, contact Trine Gallegos at firstname.lastname@example.org. Note: Trine also does community outreach for Antioch High.