OSWEGO, NY – Delaney Roddy is serious about her education. And, she wants to ensure the students who come after her receive the same quality education that has helped her gain academic success.
The daughter of James and Christina Roddy spoke at the recent public hearing on the proposed 2011-12 school district budget.
She encouraged the board of education to save the study skills program. It was a great help to her in transitioning form sixth grade into seventh grade. It taught her skills that she will continue to use the rest of her academic career, she told the board. All seventh graders should have the opportunity to take the course, she added.
While she might not have saved the class, Superintendent Bill Crist indicated he would like to find a way to make the principles of that class available to all students, no matter what grade level.
Besides being a good student, Delaney is also a humanitarian.
“A few years ago, there was this little who was in my school (Leighton) and his family had a house fire, lost everything, right around Christmas,” she said.
“She came home that day and said to me, ‘I am going to give up my Christmas.’ And I said, ‘what?’ She said she’d give all the money if I could return her gifts and buy presents for this little boy. She told me that’s what she wanted to do,” her mother said.
“I said OK – and I’m of course like OK what ever you want,” she continued, mimicking the emotion in her voice at the time. “She said that kindergartener can’t wake up Christmas morning without anything underneath the tree!”
So, Delaney went to school and spoke with her principal. They arranged a fund-raiser with the student’s kindergarten teacher. They had a special hats day that raised more than $500 – just for that one day.
“It was just that one day,” the youngster said. “I charged 50 cents or a quarter or more to wear a hat. And you’d be surprised at how many people brought in money,” she told Oswego County Today.
They bought a washer for the family, her mother said.
“And, we bought a lot of Christmas presents for him as well,” Delaney added. “A lot of other people brought in Christmas presents, too. Everyone was bringing in things. We got little trucks and hats and gloves, little things like stocking stuffers.”
She sat with the little boy at lunch after the holidays.
“We talked about what he got for Christmas. I asked him what he got from Santa Claus and he told me he got trucks and all this other stuff and I said. ‘Oh, that sounds like fun,’” she recalls.
And a year ago when the earthquakes hit Haiti she was sitting in science with her friends.
“We started talking about it and we decided we wanted to do something about it. We wanted to do something, but we didn’t know what. We wanted to have a food drive or something,” she said.
Then, they started talking to other friends.
They ended up doing “Hearts for Haiti.”
“We cut out a whole bunch of (paper) hearts and we would sell them and we put them up in the main entrance way of the school,” she said. “We ended up raising about $500. And then we had a really generous donation from someone who gave us $500.”
“The money was delivered to Haiti and it helped pay for the reconstruction of an orphanage that was destroyed in the quake, she said. The loss affected so many kids. And we helped rebuild it,” she continued.
Delaney is also a member of the Oswego Figure Skating Club.
“We went and did a benefit for the Special Olympics because she was in a competition and when she came home, she was upset; she didn’t think she’d done as well as she should have,” her mother said. “We were watching it on the news and one of the other skaters is legally blind. And we watched him skate. She looked at me and she said, ‘why am I so upset? This is stupid that I am so upset.’”
“I can see. I can see where I’m going,” Delaney said. “I want to do something for Special Olympics, so I asked my mom what could we do.”
“On her behalf, I went to our (OFS) board and said I want us to contact Special Olympics and run something. We ended up running an event for Special Olympics this past February. We wouldn’t have done it unless she had said something. I would have just thought nothing of it and gone on to another day,” her mother said.
“I am still in touch with some of the people that I met there,” Delaney said.
She has her sights set on college. Her goal is not only fueled by her passion for learning and her love of animals.
Delaney said she wants to get a master’s degree, perhaps in marine biology.
“I want to be Dr. D.R.,” she said emphasizing each letter separately.