Mr. Howard and Ashlyn Goldstein

Mr. Howard and Ashlyn Goldstein.

When Ingleside Middle School social studies teacher Mr. Howard fell through his ceiling while trying to fix the alarm system in his home, he never expected that one of his students would take it upon herself to help him out. But that’s exactly what Ashlyn Goldstein did. 

After learning of her teacher’s predicament, the sixth-grader decided to launch a GoFundMe campaign to raise money for repairs.

“It is so sad to have a hole in your ceiling. No one can live like that,” Ashlyn said. “And knowing that teachers don’t make much money, I had an idea to set something up to help.”

With guidance from her mom, Sydney, and the generous donations of 41 people, Ashlyn raised $3,000 for Mr. Howard. She presented the campaign and funds as a surprise. 

Howard was given an envelope that read “Late Valentine’s Day Gift,” and at first, he didn’t think anything of it. He thanked Ashlyn, set it on the desk, and started his class on their next assignment. After opening the envelope during a free moment, he discovered a handwritten letter and a check. 

“We tried to keep it a secret as long as we could because we didn’t want him rejecting our idea,” Ashlyn said. “But we finally had to tell him once we reached our goal.”

“It’s a remarkable thing when you see a student do something so kind and meaningful like this,” Howard said. “Doing good things for others is something we talk about in my class every day, so to be the recipient of such a thoughtful gesture by one of my students in a time of need is overwhelming, to say the least!”

After realizing what the money was for and how Ashlyn raised it, Howard needed a few days to process. 

“Being the recipient of such kindness and generosity from a community of people (most of which I’ve never actually met) and led by one of your students does stop you in your tracks and makes you realize the impact you’re having in the world,” Howard said. 

The money raised covered the cost of a new ceiling and helped pay for a new alarm system.

“I am both proud and impressed with Ashlyn’s heart and character,” Howard said. “I also cannot thank her and all those people in the Ingleside community enough for contributing to help make my life a little bit easier.”

According to Sydney, this act of kindness is not surprising, as Ashlyn always thinks of others, something she attributes to their family’s ongoing mission to give back to their community. Ashlyn is involved in choir, theater and art at Ingleside and hopes to become a zoologist when she gets older.