North Texas

‘Clear the List' Campaign Helps North Texas Teachers Prepare for First Day of School

From backpacks to school supplies, parents and students have been busy getting ready for the first day of school -- and they're not alone.

Teachers have been working hard to get their rooms ready, and many are getting some much-needed help from generous donors.

First-time teacher Lakeva McNeal has worked hard to make sure everything is "just right" in her classroom for the first day of school.

"I'm going to have the students put in their journals here so they can keep it organized," she said.

Like all new teachers, McNeal had to purchase hundreds of dollars worth of supplies to fill her room.

"It exceeded over $400," she said.

Something McNeal said she would not have been able to afford on her own.

"It's hard because I'm 23 and I don't just have $400 laying in my account, just laying in my pocket to pull out," she said.

So she did what many teachers are doing and created a "wish list" on Amazon to outline the things she needs.

"Paperclips, rubberbands, scissors were on my list," she said.

And an anonymous donor purchased everything to "clear her list."

"To receive that from a complete stranger I didn't even know, that meant the world to me," she said.

School officials said this is a game changer for new teachers.

"A lot of teachers are coming into the school year not knowing what to do and we have been so blessed that so many people we don't even know have generously donated to help them clear their lists," said Sherese Lightfoot, chief of communications for Lancaster ISD.

Helping teachers like McNeal focus on their passion for teaching from day one.

"I'm beyond excited and I'm ready for whatever they throw my way," she said.

Several Lancaster ISD students received supplies thanks to a donation from the district's Education Foundation. The foundation gave $19,000 worth of supplies to provide for the 88% of students in the district who identify as economically disadvantaged.

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