Battle of the Classes


On Jan. 10, the high school Student Organization and Key Club hosted a schoolwide assembly to jump-start their seventh annual Battle of the Classes: Battling for a Cause, a fundraising event that benefits a different charity each year. In the past, students have raised $75,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Dancing Dreams, Autism Awareness, the Children’s Miracle Network, the Ronald McDonald House and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.    

This year, students in grades nine to 12 will compete to raise money for the Lexiebean Foundation for Children with Cancer, whose mission is to help ease the financial and emotional burdens of local families battling childhood cancer. The foundation also supplies care packages to patients, parents and siblings while providing financial aid to families on a case-by-case basis. Lexiebean was founded by Joseph and LeaAnn Falabella, who lost their 9-year-old daughter Alexandra (Lexie) to an infection while she was being treated for medullablastoma, a form of pediatric cancer, in 2009.

“The time that I give to the Lexiebean Foundation is the time that I would have been giving to Alexandra,” said LeaAnn during her speech. “I know how hard it is. I understand what these families are going through emotionally and financially, and all I want is to put a smile on their faces.”

Members of the Key Club produced a 10-minute video for the assembly, highlighting the Lexiebean Foundation and its wonderful work. It also focused on 1-year-old Guiliana Geller, who was diagnosed with undifferentiated small round sarcoma, an extremely rare form of pediatric cancer, in August 2013. Guiliana’s mother, Jackie, spoke to students about her experiences with the foundation and of the kindness and generosity that her family has received from the Carle Place School District.

“It has been truly amazing to receive letters and care packages from students who don’t even know us but support us and show such deep concern,” said Geller. “My family will forever cherish those moments because of you.”

The Student Organization and Key Club will host a culminating Battle of the Classes event on Feb. 28, where they will present the Lexiebean Foundation with a monetary donation.