Class Act Winner - Tia Manley

May 8, 2007
Reported by Pam Dixon

French culture and its language runs deep in Tia Manley's family. Manley says, "It became taboo to teach your children French, so my mother's generation and my generation didn't learn it that way at home. So I took it upon myself to study French in school and keep that part of my family alive."

Manley wanted to preserve the language and she wanted to teach. So she put the two together. Now this French teacher of three years at Lake Charles Boston will take some of her French students on an unforgettable field trip to France. Manley says, "With them having this experience, it's going to make their world so much bigger than Lake Charles. They're going to see things completely differently. By the time they get back with all they've learned and all they've seen they'll see how different everywhere else is. They need this too so that they can compete in society." LCB junior Kevin Bartie says, "For us to go to the French culture around people who've been living in France is great."

Raising money for the eight day trip wasn't easy, and Manley volunteered many extra hours to get it done so the students could afford to go. LCB senior Josh Glover says, "We did an Avon sale, an Easter basket fund raiser, car washes in the summer, a radio-thon." Manley says, "One girl was selling brownies to her friends on a daily basis. I had a large quantity of students who wanted to go, but only a portion were willing to do all the hard work to get here."

Manley and her students raised 30-thousand dollars in a year and a half for the trip of a lifetime.

Manley and 11 students will leave for France June 6th. The group is still trying to raise money to cover daily expenses.

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