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Shaping Young Minds

Organized by: Michael Perrigo

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MY fiance is a 4th grade teacher at a school that specializes in kids with learning disabilities and behavioral/social issues. The training these teachers go through, the tools they require, and the curriculum they develop is all completely tailored to these students. It's very specialized, and requires a lot of time and expense. The expenses unfortunately come out of the teacher's pockets, as they get absolutely nothing from the school in terms of supplies or reimbursement for training.

All of the teachers in the 4th grade are second or third year teachers, just out of college. They all have little to fill their classroom, and what they spent their money on last year has either been run down with overuse, or taken home by the kids at the end of the year.

Last year, my fiance went through a torturous time, finding herself in the ER multiple times. Appointment after appointment, scan after scan, the medical bills piled up. On top of that we have been scrounging every last dime to save for our wedding. This is only our story, as at least 2 of the other teachers in this grade have similar financial burdens.

Not only are they all strapped for cash, but they use what they have for their students. They all tutor after school, and after being up at 4:30 to prepare for the day, they drive an hour out of their way to tutor. Often, these families can't afford to pay enough for tutoring to even cover gas to get there. When they eventually get home around 8 or 9 at night, they then work to prepare for the next day until close to midnight, only to be up before five the next day. I've seen, first hand, how much these teachers give to their students.

The hours, the money and the frustration that goes into making it seamless for these challenged kids is incredible. What I'd love to do is be able to surprise this 4th grade team with a trip to a local learning supply store and have them, for once, have a FULL classroom and not have to spend what little money they have on shaping these children's lives. Anything you can give will be appreciated! Whether it's enough for a pack of erasers, or to cover a field trip, it's all very much appreciated!


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Michael Perrigo

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