Students decorate the school with painted flower pots

Clio Bruno, Staff Writer

Over this past summer, a hand-picked group of seniors painted pots in an effort to beautify the campus. 

With the paintings produced entirely by students, the artists involved in this project include seniors Ainsley Melendi, Alea Jennings, Amanda Phillips, Adam Jones, Zane Khan and Rebecca Sierra. 

“It was hard work,” Phillips said. “The hardest part was designing because the creative process takes … time and we had a deadline.”  

The team of seniors were informed of the theme of “Planting the Seed” and painted the pots in line with the theme. 

“‘Planting the Seed’ means nurturing a student and watching them move on, knowing you made a real impact on their development,” Phillips said. 

The students came to school early to ensure the pots would be finished by the time school started. It took four days for the pots to be finished and be placed around the campus. 

“It was worth it to be at school early,” Jennings said. “Teachers would come by while I was painting and compliment the pots.” 

The designs on the planters involve students’ hands, faces, flowers and the sky. The pot outside of the office was painted by Kahn and has a white background with a face painted in Classical style in the middle with leaves surrounding the border.  

“I felt privileged that I was chosen to paint it,” Kahn said. “I felt accomplished when I was done.”  

The pots are a component of the new landscaping project the school is doing this year after the installment of the fence.  

“I think it looks pretty good, and I’ve never done anything like that before,” Phillips said. “I worked with a lot of people. It was great to collaborate.”  

Assistant Principal Napoleon Wade and former AP art teacher Stacy Rosende specifically picked the students during summer. Wade came up with the idea to add art to the campus. 

“I thought about how to soften the look of the school, so I got landscaping done and reached out to get the pots painted,” Wade said. “I wanted a downtown effect – to make the school a place people want to be.”  

All of the selected seniors were students in Rosende’s AP art class the previous year. Rosende selected them based on the ability and dependability they had shown in her class. 

“The teacher from last year was such a mentor and to know that she thought I was talented enough to be one of the people to paint felt really good,” senior Ainsley Melendi said. 

After the selection, the students got to work brainstorming their ideas. After all the planning, they could paint them at the school. 

“It took a lot of us on our hands and knees, cranking it out,” Sierra said. “It was really cool.” 

Each student got one pot and painted it individually from their planning. After the work, the pots were placed at the front of the school, ready for the first day back to school. 

“I did the one near the entrance with the hands, and I’m really proud of it,” Sierra said. “It was just a great experience.” 

The majority of the pots were placed at the front so that more people can see them, with one near the parking lot. Wade plans to keep the pots at the school for at least a few years. 

“I was really honored,” Jones said. “It was cool that I could leave a lasting impression on the school.”