(Victor Valley)–Inland Empire United Way (IEUW) recently selected ten new schools to receive FREE school supplies through the School Tools program: San Antonio Elementary (Pomona), Madison Elementary (Pomona), Kingsley Elementary (Pomona), Sultana Elementary (Ontario), Mariposa Elementary (Ontario), Del Norte Elementary (Ontario), Date Elementary (Fontana), Live Oak Elementary (Fontana), Dickson Elementary (Chino), and Clement Middle School (Redlands). These schools will join 43 local schools already participating in the program.
Every full-time educator at these schools will now be able to visit the United Way’s School Tools Teacher Resource Center in Rancho Cucamonga twice a year to “shop” for free supplies for their students and classrooms. Teachers typically receive $500-1,000 worth of new products at each visit. Last year, School Tools distributed $1.2 million worth of new supplies to benefit more than 33,000 students in our local schools.
The new schools were carefully selected by IEUW’s Community Impact Advisory Board, based on need and geographic location. To be considered, all schools must have a minimum of 70% of their students enrolled in the federal free and reduced meal program and be located in IEUW’s service region; however most of these schools have more than 90% FRM enrollment.
The current economic situation has increased the need for this program in our local schools. “More than half of the students in the region are enrolled in the free and reduced meal program. If these students can’t afford lunch, it’s unlikely that their families can afford the supplies they need to learn and succeed in school,” said Gregory Bradbard, President & CEO of Inland Empire United Way.
At the Teacher Resource Center, teachers will be able to select from a wide variety of new, donated product. Displayed in a retail-like setting, items available include core school supplies, office & organizational products, arts & crafts items, incentives, books, and student basic need items. IEUW’s School Tools is an affiliate of the Kids In Need Foundation network of resource centers. There are 29 Kids In Need Foundation network affiliates in the United States.
“It was extremely difficult for our Advisory Council to select only 10 schools, because there is a great need for this program. With more resources, particularly product donations and volunteers to assist teachers in the resource center, we can continue to add more schools,” said Lorraine Ousley, Director of Community Programs at IEUW. To learn more about the School Tools program, please contact Lorraine at (909) 980-2857 ext. 203 or LOusley@ieuw.org