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Valentines - 18 PLUSS students decorate Valentines cards for veterans
Posted in , on February 14, 2024

18 PLUSS helps students with vocational development

It’s the season of love, hearts and x’s and o’s!  

“It makes me happy,” said 18 PLUSS student Emma Sturkie.  

It’s also the perfect time to spread the love and happiness with those who have served our country.  

Valentines - 18 PLUSS students decorate Valentines cards for veteransThat’s why the students of Arlington ISD’s Performance-Based Learning in Unique School Settings (18 PLUSS) program from Lamar High School decorated Valentine’s Day cards for veterans and shared their love and appreciation. 

Serving students 18-22 years old, the program is designed to support high school students eligible for special education services who require assistance in securing and sustaining employment in their local area as part of their vocational development. 

In partnering with local businesses, around 80 students visit the Esports Stadium Arlington and Expo Center or the nearby Sheraton Hotel on Tuesdays and Wednesdays each week to gain real-world work experience.  

Last week’s visit to the stadium was a little different. Instead of stocking supplies or setting up events, it was all about getting creative.  

With their own VIP suite stocked with hearts, flowers, glitter and more, the festive project sure did spread the spirit of Valentine’s Day.  

“I decorated them with stickers and drew lots of hearts on them,” said 19-year-old La’Tori Reed. 

Each card was a small token of gratitude, a reminder to the veterans that they were loved and cherished. 

Valentines - 18 PLUSS students decorate Valentines cards for veterans“Thanks for supporting our country,” Reed wrote. “I liked decorating this one because it shows love.”  

Reed, Sturkie and their classmates’ cards were given to the Mayor’s Veterans Affairs Task Force and handed out to veterans and their families.  

“We talk to them about how meaningful it is to these veterans when they open them,” said special education teacher Dana Rainwater. “It means that they are being thought of on this special day and someone has taken the time to make something special just for them.”  

With each card, they hope to brighten the day of Arlington veterans through love, kindness and the enduring spirit of community.  

“I love that these veterans get to have a piece of my students, a piece of what they created,” said Rainwater. “We hope they have a wonderful Valentine’s Day wherever they are.” 

Learn more about Arlington ISD’s 18 PLUSS services.