AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) – The Channing Independent School District is hosting their meet-the-teachers today by providing free school supplies to every student enrolled.
They serve nearly 160 students from kindergarten to 12th grade, 68% of their students come from economically disadvantaged homes and 56% of them are transferred from outside.
Their students come from parts of Dumas, Dalhart, Hartley and other rural areas.
They are also offering free food and haircuts at today’s event with discounted physical exams to help families save money.
“Each student will have their school supplies. Every student will have a new backpack, ”said Shantel Harris, teacher at Channing ISD. “We won’t have to worry that students will be embarrassed because they don’t have it or that parents have this difficulty. It’s completely taken care of for them.
The board of directors of their newly founded parent-teacher organization wanted to connect with students and their families by hosting this event.
“If they like what they hear about what’s going on about support and what’s going on in school and everything, then we hope we can attract more students,” said Jodi Harris, president of Channing PTO.
The number of students Channing has is important because if they fall below 90 students, the Texas Education Agency may stop funding the school.
This can result in their closure as the main hub of activity in their community.
“We have to stay at a certain point to keep our doors open,” said Shantel Harris. “It’s very important for us to be able to reach out to our families, all of them doing things like that to keep them involved with us, to keep them in touch with us because we want to keep doing what we’re doing.”
If their doors were to close, parents would have to transport their children by bus to other schools miles away, which can hamper rural families.
“It’s really important for our school to be here in our community so that these kids can have it there and just have this convenience and support here at home,” said Jodi Harris.
The school district’s goal for this event providing free supplies, backpacks donated by Dumas Carenet and Hand in Hand Dumas, free haircuts and low cost physical exams to their students is to let families know that ‘they are appreciated by letting their children learn Channing.
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