Schools can help with needy students' supplies

INDIANAPOLIS - In the weeks leading up to the start of the school year, school supply drives and similar opportunities for needy families abound.

But when the school bell rings, what happens to the students who missed out? 

Some districts in central Indiana are stepping up to help, and their efforts are helping not only students and parents, but also teachers.

Tony Record, who teaches AP calculus at Avon High School, admits to going out on his own to buy what his students need.

"It can add up pretty quickly," Record said.

But Record won't have to do that this year.

The Avon Education Foundation, with the help of lots of donations, is creating a stockpile of supplies just for teachers in the district, so they can make sure every student has what he or she needs.

"It does definitely take a burden off the teachers," Record said.

A few miles to the east, in the heart of the city where 84 percent of families qualify for free or reduced lunch, Indianapolis Public Schools has a similar program.

Teachers can get supplies at Teachers Treasures or just go to their main office; each school will have a large box of supplies, courtesy of Backpack Attack.

"Our students, we don't want them to be distracted by worrying about having everything that they need," IPS spokeswoman Kristin Cutler said. "So we're pleased to have partnerships with these great organizations in town that can help us get everything that our students need to give them a great start to the school year."

These are just a couple examples of the many ways school districts are making sure you child has school supplies.

Bottom line: If your son or daughter hasn't gotten everything on that back-to-school list, talk to your district or the front office at your school; chances are there is another option available.

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