Plano ISD Education Foundation's CORE Store for Teachers Opens its Doors with Help from Donors and Volunteers
September 7, 2016
On Wednesday, September 7, the Plano ISD Education Foundation and the Plano Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the opening of the CORE (Classroom Resource for Education) Store for teachers.
The CORE Store is a new initiative of the Plano ISD Education Foundation.
The store’s vision and mission are to help students succeed by equipping teachers with donated classroom resources, providing an opportunity for every Plano ISD student to have the supplies required for success in school.
The store is centrally located on 15th Street in Plano in space donated by Medical Center of Plano. Supported by donations, the CORE Store allows teachers to shop for additional school supplies for their students at no cost to them. Across the district 16,164 students (about 30%) qualify for free or reduced cost meals, with some campuses reaching as high as 90%.
“Clearly there is need, and thanks our generous donors and volunteers, there is a safety net for students and their teachers,” Said Education Foundation Development Director Kristin Alexander.
“Our teachers can now access supplies for their classrooms and their students throughout the school year without cost,” said Plano ISD Board President Missy Bender. “We are grateful for the continued support that our community provides to meet the needs of our teachers and students, giving each child the opportunity to maximize his or her personal potential.”
Welcoming the community to the store opening was Education Foundation President Chris Bragg. Mr. Bragg spoke of the need in the community and how teachers step up and provide what is necessary to help their students be successful. In a Plano ISD teacher survey, 82% of respondents reported spending $100 or more out of pocket for teaching supplies for their classrooms in a typical year, with 15% spending $500 or more.
Chris Bragg (with scissors), (left) Jean Callison and Marta Lilly cut the ribbon with help from the Plano Chamber of Commerce at the CORE Store Grand Opening Celebration
“Teachers do this because they know having the needed school supplies helps students feel confident and leads to better performance in the classroom,” said Jean Callison immediate past president of the Plano ISD Education Foundation and chair of the CORE Store committee.
In her remarks, Ms. Callison thanked community partners and the CORE Store committee who took the store from a shared vision to a fully stocked and functioning store, extending special thanks to Capital One, Kroger and Medical Center of Plano. Capital One and Kroger lead the community in organizing supply donations to help fill the shelves of the store. Capital One also provided shelving, furniture and an additional financial contribution to help fund the store’s management and operations. Kroger donated 22 pallets of supplies.
Additional partners include: Children’s Learning Adventure Center, Elite Care 24 Hour Emergency, GCA Services, Gordon Biersch Restaurant, Hilton Granite Park, Lincoln Properties, Plano Firefighters, Signs By Tomorrow, Starbucks, Title Boxing and TransAmerica. Several groups and organizations have provided volunteer resources including: Capital One, Junior League of Collin County, National Charity League, Plano ISD Council of PTAs, Plano ISD Education Foundation, Plano Senior High National Honor Society and Young Men’s Service League.
Superintendent of Schools Dr. Brian Binggeli emphasized the importance of providing this kind of resource to teachers. “Teachers do not lower their expectations, but rather, they will provide assistance from their own pockets to help their students succeed,” he said.
Plano ISD 2016-17 Teachers of the Year Bryan Yee and Erika Manning at the CORE Store Grand Opening Celebration on September 7.
“It is so exciting to see this store become a reality,” said Ms. Callison. “This store will help teachers fill in the gaps for students whose families may not be able to afford supplies. It is another way as a community that we can support our teachers and students.”