Battlefield Elementary School student honored as Outstanding School Safety Patroller
AAA is proud to announce a Fredericksburg area student has been named as an Outstanding School Safety Patroller for the 2021-2022 school year. David Vallejo, a 5th grader at Battlefield Elementary School in Spotsylvania County, was surprised with the award last week at an end-of-year party for the Safety Patrol.
David served as the Captain of the Battlefield ES patrol, something he had been dreaming about since kindergarten. Battlefield staff members describe David as a well-respected, kind and responsible leader who was always observant on duty and stepped up to perform tasks before being asked to do them.
“With David’s work ethic and life attitude, I know he is headed for great things” said Battlefield Elementary School patrol advisor Kathy Williams.
The school year started off with COVID protocols in place, that meant an expanded parent drop-off with the need for more patrollers and more patrol stations than ever before. David immediately stepped up to supervise the younger students by standing at the door to make sure they didn’t go outside until an adult was present. School staff members say he was a big part in making sure the parent pickup always went smoothly. David was also praised for the pride he took in teaching new safety patrollers how to perform their duties and checking to make sure he was relaying the information correctly.
“I am proud of the example he is setting for younger students.” says Battlefield ES librarian Stacy Hammer. “I anticipate the leadership skills he is building in the fifth grade will serve him well into his future.”
This is the second year in a row that a Battlefield Elementary School student has been honored with an Outstanding School Safety Patrol Award. David received the surprise honor this week in front of family and fellow patrollers at a party celebrating the patrol that was thrown by the school, the Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office, AAA Mid-Atlantic and Vinny’s Italian Grill and Pizzeria.
“AAA is so happy to support these programs at schools across Virginia,” says AAA Mid-Atlantic spokesperson Morgan Dean. “We give these young people the training to help make their school safer and we’re always so impressed to see how innovative they can be when it comes to implementing changes and improvements at their schools.”
For more than 100 years, the AAA School Safety Patrol has been the world’s largest school-based safety program. Patrollers around the world provide school-aged children an extra sense of safety and security during the school day’s busiest times: arrival and dismissal. As a peer-to-peer leadership development program, Safety Patrols are trained to recognize safety hazards to create a safer school environment. The presence of a AAA School Safety Patroller wearing the familiar belt & badge is a nationally recognized symbol representing more than 679,000 children throughout the country who participate in the program each year.
The AAA model has been adopted in at least 30 other countries, including England, France, Germany, the Netherlands, and New Zealand.
Photo courtesy AAA