High Five Fridays looks to bring smiles and encouragement to Aiken County kids

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Friday, Sept. 13, 2019
News 12 at 6 O'Clock

Aiken Elementary School students were dropped off at school Friday morning like they are every day. But when they got out of their car, they got a special greeting: a smile and a high five. (Source: WRDW)

AIKEN COUNTY, SC (WRDW/WAGT) -- Aiken Elementary School students were dropped off at school Friday morning like they are every day.

But when they got out of their car, they got a special greeting: a smile and a high five.

It's a part of Aiken County Public School District's "High Five Fridays", where student athletes from area high schools hang out in the drop-off line at middle and elementary schools, brightening up the days of students as they head to class.

"We're encouraging them to be the best they can be,” said Maggie O’Leary, an 11th grade cross country athlete at Aiken High School.

She and her teammate, Claire Bishop, said they're hoping to motivate younger kids to be student-athletes when they get older.

"Probably they feel good, because we're like talking to them, and they feel like, 'Oh, I want to do that one day,'” Bishop said.

It’s clear that something as simple as a morning greeting has a lasting impact on the students.

"It's just fun to see people happy out there, because some people just have a bad day, and then they see other people high-fiving people and it just makes their day," Maggie, a 4th grader at Aiken Elementary, said.

The student athletes encouraged them to take that same positivity and use it to make someone else's day great, too.

Student athletes from Aiken High, South Aiken High, and Ridge Spring-Monetta High will all be participating in High Five Fridays throughout the year.

They’ll be visiting Aiken Elementary, North Aiken Elementary, J.D. Lever Elementary, Millbrook Elementary, Ridge Spring-Monetta Elementary, Aiken Intermediate School, and Schofield Middle School.

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