Faculty to wear shirts and jeans in honor of Johnson


Students in Mr. Justin Robinson and Jeremy Jamison's design classes boxed up over 300 shirts and delivered them for teachers to pick up. Shirts will be worn with Jeans all next week in honor of Janet johnson. (Javante Shanks photo)

Hot pink t-shirts are filling the halls of the school this week. These aren’t just any spirit shirts like you see on Friday. If you take time to read the shirts, you will see in big white letters the words “Jeans for Janet” with a pair of jeans folded to form a cancer awareness ribbon. The initial idea for the jeans and shirts week came from English teacher Margaret Thomas and counselor Teri Vehon while sitting in a staff meeting.

“When they announced it and I thought that it would be really cool to design a shirt, to visually see,” ad design teacher Justin Robinson said. “They were talking about doing Jeans for Janet, and paying $15 for a shirt. This fit perfectly with our Skills USA chapter’s community service project So, the purpose of us doing this was to do our service project for the year as well as supporting Janet.”

AD design students in Justin Robinson’s class designed and printed the 300 shirts that were purchased by the faculty to be worn with jeans all next week. The shirt sales have raised over $4,500 to help Johnson with expenses related to her fight against cancer.

“To have this many of our staff get on board is tremendous,” Thomas said. “It is a testament to Janet and what she does for each and every individual.”

The AD design students came up with the design for the shirts and printed each individual shirt. Senior Estephanie Garcia admits that creating a design that was unisex presented its own challenges.

“Well  it is so pink! But we had to make the jeans more simple. We had incorporated hearts and stuff in it,” Garcia said. “We decided we shouldn’t do that because the guy teachers wouldn’t want to wear it. So we just made the design more simple and clean, not so girly. It’s a little bit harder to make it a unisex design because you can’t really incorporate as much stuff, you just have to keep the design really clean.”

Garcia is optimistic about the fundraiser and hopes that it will spread and become a project that reaches community wide.

“It’s not just a fundraiser. It’s actually someone’s life we’re talking about,” Garcia said. “I really want to make this project bigger. I don’t want this to be just for teachers, I want to turn it around to something we can sell outside to the community also. I really want Mr. Chrietzburg to approve students wearing the shirts also, so we can sell more and raise more money for Janet because she definitely deserves it.”

Robinson says that when he teaches his students and gives them projects like the Jeans for Janet design, he hopes that they learn more from the experience than making a shirt. He wants the students to gain a sense of understanding and compassion for other people.

“To me it’s about allowing the students to see the bigger picture, to kind of get out of themselves and see that there are people around us with bigger stories and things that they might be going through that you know nothing about,” Robinson said. “I want to try and help them understand and see that, so that if somebody isn’t here or they’re having a rough day, you don’t know what else is going on. To me, really what is valuable to me is trying to teach my students to see that.”

Robinson also hopes that Mrs. Jonson sees the shirts as a testament of the support she has behind her.

“I hope she understands how much the Duncanville family really loves her and values what she does” Robinson said. “This school would come to a screeching halt if we didn’t have our janitorial and maintenance staff that take care of us. I just hope she understands that we’re here for her, and we love her.”

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