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Sandy Journal

Park Lane principal slated to skydive for ‘New View in 2021-22’

Oct 04, 2021 03:14PM ● By Julie Slama

By Julie Slama | [email protected]

There isn’t much that Park Lane Principal Justin Jeffery won’t do to motivate his students.  

That includes jumping out of a plane.

“I am excited,” he said before the Sept. 25 tandem jump with an experienced skydiver from Skydive Utah. “I’ve always wanted to do this; it’s on my bucket list.”

As part of the school’s fun run, set to the school theme of a “New View in 2021-22,” Jeffery promised he’d skydive if they raised $12,000 for the PTA. The dive originally scheduled for Sept. 18, the day after the fun run, got pushed back because of inclement weather.

As of Sept. 17, students had brought in $17,856 from the fun run. The funds will be used for several PTA activities such as Reflections, Red Ribbon Week, field trips, class parties, reading wars, accelerated reading, spelling bee, as well as to provide grants to teachers for supplies and materials in the classroom, Jeffery said.

The students, all wearing matching Park Lane T-shirts, brought in financial donations for their Sept. 17 fun run, which was slightly more than one mile in the neighborhood. Jordan High’s cross-country team helped the students warm up and ran with them as Sandy Police ensured a safe passage for the elementary students’ run.

“The Sandy City police were awesome,” Jeffery said. “(They) encouraged kids through the race, were cheering them on at the end,” in addition to closing roads to traffic and ensuring everyone had finished the run.

Some years the fun run was moved to the school fields, but it returned to running the streets this year.

“It’s a lot of fun to have the parents and neighbors out in the neighborhood cheering for the students running; it really makes it fun. It definitely makes it more of a community event,” said Jeffery, who walked and ran with the students.

It also was a family event for the principal. Jeffery’s son, Jacob, returned with Jordan’s cross-country team to run with each grade level; he ran with his second-grade sister, Elizabeth; his mother, Colleen; and his dad, on the course through the neighborhood.

Principal Jeffery has been known to inspire his students to reach their goals by volunteering to ride a mechanical bull, be duct taped to a wall, sleep on the roof, dye his hair and take a pie to his face, which was his least favorite.

Now, he will be able to add skydiving to his list, thanks to Skydive Utah for donating the jump to the cause. And with the purchase of video and photo package, his students can witness their principal, dressed in a Park Lane shirt, jumping for all of their efforts.

“We’re in it together; I’m jumping for them,” he said.