In August each year, about 25,000 Springfield Public Schools students show up for school ready to learn. Because many of these students don’t have the resources to purchase their own supplies, teachers often use their own funds to supplement the paper, pencils, glue and other items needed.
This year, a new community-wide initiative called Ready. Set. Supply! will collect donations of specific school supplies so that SPS students and teachers can start the year off right on August 15.
“We know that there is inequity across our community. Within our school district, there are some schools where a number of students have greater needs,” explained Marty Moore, executive director of learning support and partnerships. “Ready. Set. Supply! will help ease that burden.”
Several faith-based organizations contacted SPS seeking to develop a more streamlined approach to collecting school supplies. “They were among the first to step forward and offer to help,” Moore said. “Working together, we developed a focused plan that would meet the specific need and support those who have the greatest need.”
Initial partners include Central Assembly of God, Council of Churches, Elevate Lives, Freshwater Church, High Street, James River, Life 360, Salvation Army, Second Baptist and Victory Mission. Others will be added to the list as community interest grows.
"Churches, church groups, and other faith groups now have a well thought out plan to come alongside SPS teachers and students with a meaningful way to help with back to school," said Rev. Mark Struckhoff, executive director of Council of Churches of the Ozarks. "I'm so grateful for SPS leadership that is organizing efforts with Ready. Set. Supply!"
Between now and July 30, community members who want to help may donate the specific supplies requested, which will be used to pack supplies. Before school starts, the supplies will be delivered to targeted schools.
The greatest need is at schools where the majority of students qualify for free or reduced price lunch. These schools will receive supplies for every student enrolled. Other SPS schools will receive a smaller supply of supplies which they can distribute as needed.
Each item hopefully will be "kid-tested/teacher-approved" and will support the curriculum taught at each grade level. To find out more about the list tailored to the school you would like to support, contact Lisa Searles at 523-0315 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
“When donated supplies match the supply list provided by the school it ensures that they are a quality product and that they will be used,” explained Jennifer Webb, principal at Williams Elementary School. “It also gives a child a sense of pride when they can come to school with the same quantity and quality of supplies that their classmates have."
- American Dehydrated Foods
- Boys & Girls Clubs of Springfield
- Brentwood Christian Church
- Care to Learn
- Central Assembly of God
- Central Christian Church
- Chapel for Peace
- City of Springfield Environmental Services
- Community Love for Kids
- Council of Churches
- Eagle Heights Worship Center
- East Grand Church of Christ
- Elevate Lives
- Fifth Apparel
- First & Calvary Presbyterian Church
- Freshwater Church
- Galloway Baptist Church
- Grant Avenue Free Will Baptist Church
- Great Southern Bank
- High Street Baptist Church
- Horace Mann Investors
- James River
- Life 360
- Little Caesars
- Macedonia Baptist Church
- McKinney Bedding
- National Heights Baptist Church
- North Point Church
- Northside Christian Church
- O'Reilly Hospitality Management
- Passion Assembly of God Church
- Realty Choice
- Red Tree Church
- Salvation Army
- Schweitzer United Methodist Church
- Second Baptist
- South-Haven Baptist Church
- Springfield Host Lion's Club
- The Connecting Grounds Church
- Trinity Lutheran Church
- Triple S Properties
- Victory Mission
Supply Collection Locations
Supply donations can be dropped off at the following locations:
Triple S. Properties
3800 S. Fremont
Great Southern Bank
2735 W. Chestnut Expressway
723 N. Benton Ave.
218 S. Glenstone
806 W. Battlefield, Ste. B
How You Can Help
In addition to participation from faith-based groups, SPS is looking for more partners to adopt schools in need of supplies, plus four organizations that would be willing to serve as a regional collection point where the general public can drop off donations. Interested businesses should call 523-0315 for more information