We Did It! TakePart's Great Back-to-School Challenge Is Fully Funded!

Thanks to you, students in high-poverty areas across the country will have the supplies they so desperately need.
Tina Hayes' students will now have the classroom supplies they need. (Photo c/o Tina Hayes)
Sep 24, 2012
Jenny Inglee is a Los Angeles-based journalist and the Education Editor at TakePart.

Well everyone, you did it. Thanks to your support, 19 classroom projects have been funded through TakePart's Great Back-to-School Challenge in partnership with DonorsChoose.

Each weekday during September, we shined a light on a different classroom in need with the hope of helping 19 inspiring teachers purchase school supplies such as pencils, books, and musical instruments.

On average, teachers spend $40 a month on school supplies and most of the teachers featured in the Challenge spend even more—up to $100 a month.

More: The Shocking Amount America’s Teachers Spend on School Supplies (Infographic)

Each and every one of you that shared an article, sent a tweet, or donated has made an impact. Donations totaled $9,136.65 and 3,840 students were reached. Teachers from a rural town in Oklahoma to a high-poverty school in the Bronx are eternally grateful. Here are some reactions from the dedicated teachers featured in the challenge.

Ms. Griffin teaches children with autism and was in desperate need of sensory tools to help her students focus on their daily lessons. She says:

I almost cried seeing that materials we so desperately need were waiting for my approval to ship. I am so grateful for your response to our need. My students are severely impacted by sensory defensiveness and sensory seeking behaviors. These materials are going to change our school year, and years to come, in a great way.

Ms. Weikart in Ohio will now have hands-on activities that will engage her kids in social studies and language arts. She says:

Teaching in an inner city school is the most difficult job I have ever had, but the most rewarding job, too. I promise to pay your generosity forward, and I will always remember what you all did for me. Thanks for supporting education: the world needs more supporters like you!

Mrs. Tavera in Brooklyn will be given new fiction books for her students. She says:

Our students come from a very depressed environment and wonderful books are an escape for them daily. It's also the key to their future being a bright and exciting one. We are happy to know you are supporting us. We appreciate the wonderful way in which you have all made this project possible for our students.

Mr. Dziepak's 7th graders will be able to build an urban garden because of your generosity. He says:

We do not take your donations lightly and look forward to implementing your gifts into creating our garden oasis. The learning that will occur between the creation of the garden and its ongoing use will be a testament to your generosity and support of education.

Although the challenge has ended, there are many other teachers and classrooms projects that need your support. If you have a moment, spread the word about DonorsChoose.org.

Jenny is the Education Editor at TakePart. She has been writing for TakePart since 2009 and previously worked in film and television development. She has taught English in Vietnam and tutors homeless children in Los Angeles. Email Jenny | @jennyinglee | TakePart.com

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