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Flowery Branch students raise funds to flush out cancer
Terresa Shubert, left, crowns Flowery Branch science teacher Terri Barker as “Queen of the Throne” on Thursday because she raised the most money for Relay for Life by having students pay to put a purple-painted toilet in her classroom. Cancer survivor Shubert runs the Partnership for Success Club that spearheaded the project.

Flowery Branch High School students and teachers competed this month for their right to a porcelain throne, while taking a step to flush out cancer.     

The Partnership for Success Club at Flowery Branch High sponsored a “Flush Out Cancer” fundraiser during December to raise money for Relay for Life, a branch of The American Cancer Society.

The club’s purpose is to bring students with and without disabilities together to work on leadership skills and community service.

Students and teachers had the opportunity to pay $5 to put the purple-painted toilet, or “throne,” in their classroom.

Partnership for Success President Heather Lespinasse, a senior, said the students thought the purple throne would be a good way to raise money and cancer awareness. The club purchased the toilet and painted it purple, a color affiliated with Relay for Life.

The effort evoked a competitive environment throughout the school.

“It was very entertaining to see this gaudy purple toilet in teachers’ classrooms and it really created a competition between teachers to have the toilet in their classroom and paying to get the toilet back into their room,” Lespinasse said.

The club hoped to raise at least $200 by Thursday.

“Flush Out Cancer really has been a lot of fun and everyone from the janitorial staff all the way up to the principal has participated,” teacher Terresa Shubert said. Shubert, a breast cancer survivor, is the teacher adviser to the Partnership for Success Club.

Teacher David Roberson said Shubert has been the driving force behind this fundraiser.

“The improvements in breast cancer treatments are so much better today than they were and that is why we need to work hard to make a difference. However, the bottom line is Dr. Shubert’s spirit is what makes it fun at FBHS,” Roberson said.

On Thursday, the club held a crowning ceremony for the “queen of the throne,” science teacher Terri Barker.

The title went to the teacher whose classroom raised the most money. The ceremony was filmed to be played on the school news for students.

Although this is the first year for this fundraiser, Lespinasse said students hope it becomes a tradition.

 “We decided as a senior class we wanted to do this. ... We just want to raise awareness as much as we can,” Lespinasse said.