Winter will be a little warmer for more than 1,000 Oklahoma City children. On Friday morning, three elementary schools received a huge donation of coats for their students.
“We’ve always found that if you make a child feel good, then they’ll succeed,” says Larry Lemon, whose family donated more than $20,000 to the Oklahoma City Public Schools Foundation in order to outfit all the low-income students at Edwards, MLK and FD Moon elementary schools.
The children also received socks from the Cleats 4 Kids program.
Superintendent Dr. Sean McDaniel says something as simple as clothing makes a big difference in a child's performance.
“We think about, we need to raise test scores and we think about graduation rates, but we have got to pay more attention to these fundamental basic needs that our kids have,” he says.
The beaming smiles on the young faces prove a little coat can go a long way.
McDaniel says, “This makes them feel more confident because they look around, they’ve got some of the same things everybody else has.”
Of the 46,000 public schools students in Oklahoma City, though, 90% live below the poverty line, making this contribution a drop in the bucket of the vast need of the community.
Lemon encourages others with means to join the cause.
He says, “If we can pass it on to the next generation and help the younger generation succeed and have opportunities they might not otherwise have, then that’s a win-win situation.”
The OKCPS Foundation is still about $60,000 short of its goal to coat every kid in need in the district. To donate, click here.