Classroom Central provides free school supplies to 135 Iredell County educators

Posted at 9:20 PM on Feb 10, 2019

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Since 2002 Classroom Central has helped more than 127,000 students and their teachers in nearly 200 schools across six school districts.

BY KARISSA MILLER
Classroom Central of Charlotte observed one of its biggest teacher supply giveaway days in Iredell County last week as 135 educators registered for their mobile event on Wednesday.

The nonprofit’s big green mobile free store, “ClassVROOM Central,” stopped in Statesville and set up across the street from Statesville Middle School on Wednesday. Teachers were lined up outside the free supply store before 3 p.m. start.

Teachers, guidance counselors and other school employees in Iredell-Statesville Title I schools (where there is a high population of economically disadvantaged children) were eligible to pick up paper, notebooks, pencils, STEM materials, art supplies and more.

Classroom Central is a Charlotte-based nonprofit organization. All items are free and donated. Each teacher received supplies worth an average of $327.

“This is an awesome event,” said Classroom Central program coordinator Sheri Osborne.

The event provides school supplies to students in the area whose families cannot afford them.

N.B. Mills art teacher Shannon Sechler said on average she spends between $50 and $100 each semester out of her own paycheck on art supplies for her students.

“I have to admit, sometimes I get ideas and say, ‘Ooh, I need this,’ ” Sechler said.

Harmony Elementary fourth-grade Language Arts teacher Ramona Roberts said she is grateful for the people who donate to Classroom Central.

“We’re just lacking in materials and we serve a lot of boys and girls in need,” she explained. “They seem to always have the supplies that I need.”

Some students do have parents that can provide for them, but for those students who don’t this allows them to feel special, Roberts said.

“I give a notebook to all kids. I have an area set up where they go over to that area and pick up what they need. That way no one is singled out. There’s no feeling of them being different or without things,” she added.

Teachers say that without the proper tools, children can become disengaged from school and form a negative association with learning. School officials know that often times this can lead to absenteeism and the increased likelihood that they will ultimately drop out of school.

Since 2002 Classroom Central has helped more than 127,000 students and their teachers in nearly 200 schools across six school districts.

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Visit classroomcentral.org for more information.

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