Fundraising Feb. replaces LAEF’s Royal Gala

LAEF’s 2021 King Dr. Gregg Stone. Courtesy photo

The Los Alamitos Education Foundation (LAEF) announced last week, that “Fundraising February for Los Al Kids” will take the place of LAEF’s signature fundraising event, The Royal Gala, this year. In addition, LAEF announced that the campaign’s king honoree is Dr. Gregg Stone. The LAEF Board of Directors selected the Interim Principal of Los Alamitos High School to be crowned king and serve as the LAEF royal ambassador for the year.

“2020 was a tough year for everyone,” said LAEF Executive Director Carrie Logue. “LAEF funding is down $400,000, so many of our services are at-risk of cancelation, including mental health & wellness support, fee waiver scholarships for families in need, free elementary world language classes, the STEAM initiative, and more.”

Since holding their eighth annual Royal Gala is not an option at this time, LAEF teams will be contacting individuals and businesses throughout the Los Al community to donate. The community is also invited to participate in an online auction taking place during the month of February.

Dr. Gregg Stone represents exactly what LAEF was looking for in an honoree during this difficult time. In August 2020, Dr. Stone came out of his recent retirement to serve as the Interim Principal of Los Alamitos High School in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. He retired as the LAHS Principal in June 2019 after spending 21 years as Assistant Principal and Principal. Even in retirement, Dr. Stone spent the 2019-20 school year volunteering with LAHS counseling and assisting students needing additional academic and social-emotional support.

Stone’s leadership and connection to the Griffin community are unparalleled and he is the ideal leader for the LAHS community during this unprecedented time. He regularly works evenings and weekends to monitor and communicate the ever-changing situation of the pandemic. His “Thought-of-the-Week” messages have become legendary with LAHS families; they give thought provoking and wise perspectives on life and provide a big-picture view during very uncertain times.

“When we put out the call for nominations, the considerations focused on someone who demonstrates amazing support for Los Al kids, has longevity of service, is well respected in the community, and a strong supporter of LAEF. Dr. Stone was the perfect choice! He is a humble and gracious leader who cares deeply for our District community, and we are so excited to honor him through this campaign,” said Logue.

Proceeds from LAEF’s Fundraising February for Los Al Kids will support the launch of the middle school Well Spaces, which provide mental health and wellness services at Oak and McAuliffe Middle Schools. LAEF donated $60,000 to build out the spaces and is working to develop programing and services in conjunction with district administration. Donations will also directly fund teachers for free elementary world language classes, which are taking place online for the 2020-21 school year and include Spanish, Mandarin, Japanese, French and American Sign Language. The STEAM initiative and providing fee waiver scholarships for families in need continue to be areas funded by LAEF donor contributions.

For more information and to sponsor, donate or provide auction items for the campaign, please visit www.LAEF4Kids.org/FundFeb.

LAEF is the non-profit partner of Los Alamitos Unified School District. LAEF enhances educational excellence by providing after-school and summer enrichment programs to children in grades Pre-K to 12. LAEF provides significant funding for STEAM teachers and instruction, as well as igniting new programs and providing valuable resources, to impact all students. For additional information on LAEF, please call (562) 799-4700 Extension 80424 or visit www.LAEF4Kids.org.

Fundraising Feb. replaces LAEF’s Royal Gala