Chapel Hill-Carrboro teachers shop for free school supplies to mitigate out of pocket costs

ByLaura Browne via WTVD logo
Tuesday, August 23, 2022
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Chapel Hill-Carrboro Teachers given access to free school supplies via Teacher Supply Store thanks to East Chapel Hill Rotary Club.

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WTVD) -- It's that time of the year! Streets will soon be filled with big yellow buses, parents, students are back-to-school shopping and teachers are preparing their classrooms.

Some Chapel Hill and Carrboro teachers got a little help with school supplies. More than $45,000 worth of bright, colorful school supplies sat in a gym Tuesday, free for teachers from Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools to select from during this year's Teacher Supply Store.

Teachers can spend hundreds of dollars of their own money on supplies for the classroom, said Madeline Blobe, executive director of the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Public School Foundation. The Teacher Supply Store is not only an effort to mitigate what teachers pay out of their own pockets but also to show teachers support and appreciation, she said.

"Our teachers more than ever need to feel loved and appreciated and supported," Blobe said. "So that is the main reason we're here, so that they know that this community supports them and we're here for them."

Funds for the supplies were raised by the East Chapel Hill Rotary Club. According to Blobe, the event expects to serve over 600 teachers.

Yolanda Grant, is a fourth grade teacher for Chapel Hill-Carrboro Public Schools said that support for teachers has felt low during the pandemic, but the event created a feeling of being recognized for hard work.

"I don't think a lot of people really realize how much teachers put their own money into getting their classrooms together, so to be able to have an organization like this come in and actually help us out with the supplies is awesome," Grant said.

Teachers were able to take home up to $50 worth of school supplies in addition to being given a $25 gift card to Walmart to purchase more supplies.

The special event has served area teachers since 2008. It alternates between serving elementary teachers to serving middle school and high school teachers and other staff members.

According to Blobe, the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Public School Foundation makes many efforts to show teachers support through grants, awards and other measures.

"We just want to continue sharing our love with them and our appreciation for them and make them feel wanted and appreciated here," Blobe said.