Harding kids make banners for school

Artistic banners made by students of Harding Junior High School on display outside of the school.

For about a month, there have been three new splashes of color on the facade of Warren G. Harding Middle School in Frankford.

The banners that now adorn the school’s Torresdale Avenue entrance were made by Harding’s pupils. School staffers and community members on Friday lauded the kids’ artistry and the help they got from the professionals who took an interest in them.

More than 40 pupils captured images from the school’s history for the banners. They were guided by teaching artist Betsy Casanas of the Semilla Arts Initiative.

“I’m proud of you,” state Rep. Tony Payton Jr. (D-179th dist.) told the pupils.

The banners represent the three pillars of a sound education: arts, academics and sports, said Michael Calderone, Harding’s principal.

It’s no accident that the middle banner celebrates academics, he said.

“Academics are the center of all we’re doing,” the principal said.

The banners are meant to capture “the richness of the school,” Casanas said.

More artistic endeavors will come to Harding, she said.

The project was completed in conjunction with the city’s Arts Rising program.

During Friday’s ceremony, Madison Sperduto and Chris Griffin, both members of the Harding Def Poets, performed original works. ••