“Flying Classroom” Lands at Compton Middle School

Over 1,000 students came to watch it land on the playground

Over 1,000 students and staff from eight Southern California middle schools got a chance Wednesday to watch a "flying classroom" land on a playground at Compton’s Davis Middle School.

In this case, the "flying classroom" was a helicopter flown by Barrington Irving, the one-time Guinness World Records holder for the youngest person to fly solo around the world. Irving used the helicopter to tell students about the importance of getting involved in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

"I tell students all the time, through math and science, you can do anything," Irving said. "To be able to share that with other students with similar background as myself and to be here in Compton to try and inspire them, that’s what this is about."

The students reacted positively to the event.

"I wish I could travel around the world, too," eighth grader Yuriana Gallardo said.

The event also featured student projects ranging from robotics to models of cities, along with a visit from 92-year-old Tuskegee Airman Levi Thornhill.

"You see all of these kids," Thornhill said. "I wonder how many of these kids are going to do something extremely important."

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