ARCOLA, Ill. (WCIA) — Small school, big attitude. You can find pride for the school district plastered all over Our Town. According to students and staff, it’s easy to see why.
It’s official: School is back in session. While some students might not be thrilled about ending summer vacation, it seems there’s a lot of positivity about being a Purple Rider.
“100%. Like, without a doubt. I wouldn’t want to go anywhere besides Arcola.”
Austin Hopkins is a senior this year. He’s also a football star. But, what he’s most proud of is being a fourth-generation Arcola student.
“The tradition is really big here and it definitely makes me want to come back even for my kids.”
Behind every student in the Arcola School District is a wealth of support.
“We had a community group lead a fund drive and they raised over $750,000 for us to go One-to-One as a school district.”
Superintendent Tom Mulligan says, because of that, every student has a tablet taking learning into the 21st century.
“I’ve never, to be honest, seen a community support a school district like Arcola does. As you can see, there’s the poles around town. We have our names on them.”
Support on the outside aside, there’s a tight-knit feeling on the inside as well.
“Almost have our students are of Mexican descent, so we’ve also got families that send their kids here that are Amish students. With that brings, I think, this incredible culture of tolerance and respect.”
Mulligan says, the all-encompassing strength you find here is what sets the schools apart.
“We can offer our kids about anything that big schools can offer their kids. So, I think, in a nutshell, is why I would choose Arcola.”
The One-to-One program started about five years ago. They also have one of the top 5 winning-est football programs in the state.