Boulder Avenue Elementary School kindergarten teacher Matt Santala has had only two haircuts since coming to the school six years ago.
On Wednesday, sitting on a small podium in the center of the school's crowded gymnasium, he had his below-shoulder-length hair cut for a very good cause, raising nearly $1,500 for the school's special needs assistant, Kelly Sharp, who has been battling leukemia.
Standing in the back of the room, Sharp was overwhelmed.
"Seeing the support is more important than the money," she said before adding quickly that the money is much needed to help with expenses from spending six months in Seattle where she underwent a bone marrow transplant.
"The kids are amazing," she said. "The only thing I can do is pay it forward."
Sharp missed most of the year because of her medical treatments, but returned about three weeks ago, which is when Santala came up with the idea for the fundraiser.
The school sold tickets for admission to the event, asking $1 for kids, $3 for adults, and $10 for a VIP pass that included a chair to sit on.
"It's a super lesson to teach the little ones," Santala said.
"This is what teachers do."