Fairfax schools chief Karen Garza takes ice bucket challenge

Fairfax Schools Superintendent Karen Garza gamely participated in the ALS ice bucket challenge Wednesday at West Potomac High School. She's the second schools chief in the Washington-area to take part in the viral phenomenon. Earlier this month, superintendent Joshua P. Starr in Montgomery County also got doused.

Fairfax County schools chief Karen Garza was soaked by a bucket filled with ice water Wednesday afternoon as part of the viral phenomenon known as the ALS challenge.

The ice bucket challenge, popular with teens on social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, has helped raise close to $100 million for ALS research. Commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, ALS has no known cure.

Garza took the challenge at West Potomac High school alongside Principal Alex Case. After the orange water cooler was poured over her head, Garza yelped.

“That will take your breath away,” she said. The superintendent said she was happy to take part in the challenge. “It’s a dread disease we need to cure.”

Earlier this month, Montgomery County schools chief Joshua P. Starr also took part in the challenge.

Garza was nominated by Mount Vernon High School Principal Nardos King, who decided to end a faculty meeting last week with a splash by doing the challenge.

“I’m going to challenge Dr. Garza, the superintendent of Fairfax County schools,” King said at the meeting. “And I want you all to pray for me.”

On Wednesday, King had the honor of pouring the bucket over Garza.

“She’s a brave one, isn’t she?” Garza told a crowd of 50 West Potomac students and staff.

“I love my job,” King said, before dousing her boss.

Case, the West Potomac principal, said the superintendent was a good sport to take part in the challenge.

“The opportunity to bring students and staff together was too good to pass up,” Case said.

Garza, drenched in her University of Texas long horns shirt, said: “If it inspires people to help the cause, that’s great.”

T. Rees Shapiro is an education reporter.
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