A San Luis Obispo principal retiring this year is leaving a positive message behind for her students.
Marlie Schmidt has been principal at Los Ranchos Elementary for the last seven years.
She recently had each child at the school put their painted handprint into a new mural on the handball court, forming a heart.
The words "Los Ranchos Strong" are also written.
Schmidt says the mural is symbolic because after a crazy year that included Zoom and distance learning and students not returning to campus until this past March, every child had a hand in the mural.
“This has been a crazy year and we’ve just had our kids back since March and we haven’t been able to have whole school events or activities, so we wanted to mark this year by celebrating how strong our Road Runners have been,” Schmidt said.
Sixth grader Emily Svendsen told KSBY News that she thinks the mural is a cool idea.
"It represents our school and what we do and I'm really proud of it," Svendsen said. "We're not just a school, but we're a family. We're united, and we're all really close together."
After retirement, Schmidt, who has served in education for the last 30 years, says she plans to travel and spend lots of time with her new grandbaby.