Your Character Matters: Pancha's Pal

TULARE, Calif. - Every week in partnership with the Tulare County Office of Education, we tell stories about South Valley students with character.

Taking care of a class pet is a big job, and in Mrs. Lawson's 6th grade Palo Verde Union Elementary School class in Tulare, the class pet is a corn snake named Pancha.

"Pancha's Pal" is a titled given to a student who volunteers their free time to take care of her. This year, 6th grader Arturo Torres volunteered and stepped up to the plate. 

"You are suppose to clean the cage, check the water," Arturo Torres said. "Mrs. Lawson brings a mouse and I have to feed it to her."

Arturo's gentle nature with Pancha is just like how he treats and cares for his teacher and his friends.

"He is a role model to me," his classmate Andrew Diaz said. " I know others would say the same thing. He has always been there for other people."

And from the classroom to the ballroom, Arturo is a leader.

Taking up ballroom dancing and showing others that being a gentlemen never goes out of style.

"For boys to want to do it is very rare, because boys that age are shy and timid, but Arturo just went for it," said ballroom instructor and his class teacher, Maria Lawson.

From the tango to swing, and everything in between -- Arturo dances his way through life with character.

"He is not afraid to make a difference with other students," Mrs. Lawson said. "He is not afraid to give a hand when others would think, 'oh that's not cool'."

Arturo is certainly not afraid of dancing or making a difference in people's lives. Friend Andrew Diaz adds:

"If you are looking for a true loyal friend, call Arturo Torres."

Arturo Torres of Palo Verde Union Elementary School shows us why Your Character Matters.


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