TURNER — It’s official: Leeds Central School has a new therapy dog and three-legged Lucky Tim has a school.

Lucky Tim at Leeds Central School in December with school kids, celebrating his first birthday. The pup has officially become the school’s therapy dog. Daryn Slover/Sun Journal file photo

At last week’s SAD 52 board of directors meeting, board members adopted a new therapy dog policy.

Christy Gardner, who has worked with Leeds for the last year, bringing Lucky Tim in for training and getting the puppy acclimated to students, said Friday that he’s passed all four of the certifications needed to become a school therapy dog with handler Claire Parker.

The 13-month-old yellow Lab was born without a wrist bone in his right front leg and had the leg amputated at 12 weeks.

“I’m so thrilled that the school board approved him to work with the kids and so proud of him for passing all of his evaluations on the first try,” Gardner said. “He’s so smart and has such a great temperament. I know the students and the teachers love having him there and he’s been beneficial every day that he’s been on the job so far.”

Parker is the administrative assistant to Leeds school Principal Danielle Harris. Superintendent Kimberly Brandt said he’s at school every day with Parker.

“Our hopes are to have Lucky Tim support all students — they love him — and to provide additional support to students who have behavior and social-emotional needs,” Brandt said.

The district previously had a general policy for animals in school.

In other school board news:

  • Brandt said a project to replace a very old water pump at Turner Elementary School went seamlessly, without a water interruption. The project, which included engineering work and state approval, had been anticipated to cost $60,000 but came in under budget.
  • The district received two School Revolving Renovation grants, one for $29,145 earmarked for Americans with Disabilities Act compliance, and another for $474,157 for indoor air quality.

“We will be meeting in the next couple of weeks to discuss the scope of the projects,” she said.

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