December 13, 2011

Press Release: Rancho Encinitas Academy Students Support the Troops by Providing a ‘Home Away from Home’ During the Holidays

Posted in REA Releases at 10:55 pm by ranchoencinitasacademy

Media Contact:

Ali Grant


T: 858.342.5645




School wide Camp Pendleton Marine Corps family adoption and care package delivery to United States Air Force troops teach local students the meaning of giving, not receiving.

December 13, 2011 – Encinitas, CA— While children across the county plan their holiday wish lists, Rancho Encinitas Academy students learn the importance of lending a helping hand by giving back to those serving our country. Rancho Encinitas Academy students adopt Marine Corps families and send reminders of home to troops deployed to South Africa.

Meg Burton, Edison Academy teacher and wife of Camp Pendleton pilot, decided to collaborate with students to spread cheer to the troops during the holidays. Rancho Encinitas Academy adopts two families from a training squadron at Camp Pendleton. One of the families consists of three sons, all under the age of three, and the other, a pregnant wife with cervical cancer. “Students were touched by the stories of the families adopted and were eager to lend support,” says Burton.

REA students, teachers, and parents were brought together to collect toys, food, gifts, and money for the families. Each gift is a reminder of holiday cheer to help the troops through the holidays away from relatives. Gifts were delivered to the families the week of December 12th.

Fifth and sixth grade teacher, Erin Lopez, headed the care package program after hearing the story of Khirsa Geist, member of the United States Air Force. Geist, deployed to South Africa in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in the beginning of September, was forced to leave her 18-month old and four year old daughters at home with relatives. Her husband was also deployed at an undisclosed location at the time of her deployment. Lopez recruited the help of her Rancho Encinitas Academy students to lend a hand to Geist and her troop. Students collected magazines, protein foods, stickers, hand made cards, candy, and more – totaling a whopping 112 pounds and consisting of 9 boxes of multiple care packages.

Students learned the importance of giving, as items were received and letters of gratitude poured into Rancho Encinitas Academy. Khirsa Geist of the United States Air Forces says, “We can’t tell you enough how much we appreciate a little touch of home. Things like this are what keeps us fighting for your freedom!”

Rancho Encinitas Academy will be collaborating once again to donate care packages to the troop of Josh Cook, deployed husband of Khirsa Geist in the new year.

Additional quotes and pictures are available on request.

About Rancho Encinitas Academy

Rancho Encinitas Academy (REA) prepares students for high school in a hands-on, child-focused environment that encourages knowledge, creativity, and independence. The academy’s learn-by-doing approach fosters organizational and communication skills that benefit students for years to come. Opening its doors in 1995, REA serves students from kindergarten through the 8th grade, as well as pre-kindergarten for those age 3 to 5 years old. REA has a strict 10:1 student to teacher ratio and is located on a naturally beautiful learning environment in Encinitas, California.

Edison Academy, housed on the campus of Rancho Encinitas Academy, is designed to meet the needs of bright children in grades 3 through 8 who have mild to moderate learning difficulties. Students are taught methods and strategies that assist them in becoming mainstream, independent learners.

For more information about enrollment for both schools, visit:


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