PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — More than 1,000 Palm Beach County students, teachers, staff and community members hit the pavement Saturday morning to be heroes for education.
The Education Foundation of Palm Beach County hosted its 8th annual Heroes for Education 5k Run/Walk. The event supports the Foundation's efforts to support teachers through grants and the Red Apple Supplies Program.
School district superintendent Mike Burke was also on hand to show support and cheer on the runners. "We're fortunate to have the Ed Foundation, they raise extra funds that go directly to our teachers for important supplies, they are handing out grants throughout the year, raised $1.4 million last year just to help our schools and they get the business community involved," Burke said.
Ryan Vladimir, a runner at Boca Raton Community High School, finished first in the race at about 17 minutes and 43 seconds.
"I’m feeling really great, that was almost a personal record for me," Ryan said. "I’ve been a student at the school district since day one, since kindergarten way back when and I didn’t pick up running until high school. I really enjoy supporting races like this that help the school district because they’ve done far too much for me, I can’t thank them enough for everything."
Education Foundation CEO James Gavrilos said the huge turnout at the event shows the community support for the teachers in the classroom.
"The business community is saying to our teachers- we love you. Our teachers are just exhausted, they've been through a lot these past two years and a day like this says to the teachers, you are not alone. Palm Beach County loves you," he said.
The event also included a kids one mile race, 100 yard dash and a mascot race. Schools earned grant money for having the highest participation in the event, the fastest team, and for participating in the mascot race.
The event raises about $20,000-$30,000.