BALDWIN PARK – Margaret Heath Elementary School students collected pennies and coin donations from their families and neighbors over the last year to fund a $500 scholarship for a Baldwin Park Unified graduate, as part of a long-standing tradition to celebrate the school’s namesake on Oct. 7.
During this year’s celebration, Baldwin Park High School Class of 2022 graduate Linah Robles was awarded the Margaret Heath Scholarship to help fund her educational pursuits at Mt. San Antonio College. Robles is studying psychology at Mt. SAC with the goal of becoming a child psychologist.
Continuing the tradition that began in 1951, the school community has honored Margaret Heath by fundraising for the scholarship that is granted every year to a Heath alumnus to help pay for their post-secondary education. Heath dedicated her life to Baldwin Park and served as a longtime educator, administrator and volunteer for BPUSD.
During the ceremony, student council members told the story of Heath, who was born in 1860 and became principal of Central Elementary in 1913. After Heath retired, Baldwin Park Unified dedicated a new elementary school in her honor and Margaret Heath Elementary opened its doors in 1927.
Heath died in 1952, and since then families and employees have continued bringing bouquets of flowers to place by her portrait and bags of pennies, wrapped in school colors, to add to the red wagon to fund the scholarship.
“I remember sitting in the audience listening to this speech from past Heath Scholarship recipients,” Robles said. “I would love to thank the teachers and staff of Margaret Heath Elementary for being such positive and inspiring role models, not only for me but for generations to come. Preparing me for the secondary level was their responsibility and I’m so thankful for that.”
Robles attended Margaret Heath Elementary before promoting to Olive Middle School, and later to Baldwin Park High School. She is a graduate of Baldwin Park Unified’s Dual Language Program.
“Margaret Heath Day is a significant Baldwin Park Unified event, when we honor the trailblazers of our District’s past and celebrate our future leaders,” Baldwin Park Unified Superintendent Dr. Froilan N. Mendoza said. “We are so thankful to our families and employees for continuing this beloved tradition.”
10.07.22 Margaret Heath Day_1: Margaret Heath Elementary School teachers stand with Heath Scholarship recipient Linah Robles, Baldwin Park High School Class of 2022 graduate and student at Mt. San Antonio College, during Margaret Heath Day on Oct. 7.