NORTH CHALRESTON, S.C. (WCIV) — Thousands of teachers across the Lowcountry are stocked up on school supplies for Monday’s first day of school. Many of them will run out by Christmas.
“Pencils, crayons, compositions, colored pencils, STEM supplies,” said Lynette Duggins, Executive Director of Teachers’ Supply Closet. She’s listing off just a few items her organization provides for free to teachers of Title 1 schools.
Schools are classified as Title 1 if they have a high percentage of low income students. That also means those students and their families are not required to provide their own classroom supplies, requiring teachers of Title 1 schools to dig into their own pockets for all pencils, paper, and anything else they might need.
“It’s a love and it’s a heart and a giving and expectation that they want to see their students do well,” Duggins said.
Teachers’ Supply Closet operates out of Garrett Academy of Technology, located at 2731 Gordon Street in North Charleston. The organization is currently searching for permanent housing.
Duggins told ABC News 4 the group first started in 2008 and is now partnering with 52 Title 1 schools across the Lowcountry this year. She said 32 pre-selected teachers are invited to browse for free items every Tuesday and Thursday.
“Their heart and love for their students,” Duggins said of what motivates teachers to dig into their own pockets. “For them to be educated to a level of excellence that they can go out and be productive citizens. Teachers are very valuable.”