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Second-hand fashion gets a new life at FHS

Done a little spring cleaning and don’t know what to do with all the old Tiger sweatshirts or outgrown Tiger sweatpants? Farmington High School teacher Heidi Revels will take them.

Starting this spring, Revels and her students will set up a second-hand store in FHS, with the goal of selling gently used Tiger clothing — any size, any style — at a reduced price. It will be an ongoing project to help her teach her special education students.

Revels is the special education workforce coordinator at FHS. Part of her curriculum includes teaching students job skills, like working as a team or the importance of getting to work on time. Her students do a number of jobs — cleaning, sorting mail — around the high school, and around the community.

While these jobs give students experience, Revels really wanted to develop a program for more students to work right in Farmington High School. When she heard about another school that ran a second-hand store in its building, Revels came up with the idea to start a similar store at FHS.

She talked to principal Ben Kusch and business teacher Lois Luecke, who runs the school store program. They found some storage space and some clothing racks to store any donations to the second-hand store, then set to finding those donations.

Any kind of Tiger-themed clothing is accepted, Revels said. All sizes are welcome, from children’s clothes through adult sizes.

“A lot of times when kids graduate and go on to college, their parents are left with all of this stuff their kids don’t wear anymore,” Revels said. “We’ll take it off their hands and put it to good use.”

The elementary and middle schools have all made school-specific clothing in the past. Revels will take those items, too, because it is likely there are younger kids in the school district who could use some of those styles.

There are two collection bins in Farmington High School. One is near the district offices on the first floor, the other right inside the main entrance doors on the second floor. FHS students can drop off any items in the bins, but the bins are also accessible to anyone who wants to bring something in to the school.

The special education work force students will take care of the donations. They will price the items, fold or hang the clothing and separate it out by size. When the store is open, they will learn how to take inventory and maintain their budget. They will handle the transactions and interact with their customers.

“This is a great opportunity for my kids. It’s so realistic for them,” Revels said. “It’s a fun opportunity for them too.”

Revels plans to start the second-hand store in a few weeks. It will be open one day a week, and during special events like Homecoming. This will be an on-going, project for her students, so Revels is accepting donations indefinitely.

Michelle Leonard

Michelle Leonard joined the Woodbury Bulletin staff in November, 2014, after 14 years covering news for the Bulletin's sister publication, the Farmington Rosemount Independent Town Pages.  Michelle earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications: News-Editorial from Mankato State University in 1991. She is an active member of the American Legion Auxiliary Clifford Larson Unit 189 of Farmington, and served as the 2014-15 Third District President to the American Legion Auxiliary Department of Minnesota. Michelle is also the volunteer coordinator for the Minnesota Newspaper Museum which is open annually during the Minnesota State Fair. She has earned Minnesota Newspaper Association awards in Investigative Reporting, Local News Coverage, Feature Photography and Column Writing. 

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