Impact

The first teacher to shop at the Free 2 Teach store came through our doors in January 2013.  There have been 5,924 teacher visits since that first visit.  Since that first day, we have been privileged to give away over $2.6 million worth of free resources to our public school teachers and their students!

For the 2015 – 2016 school year, we are pleased to report that we have hosted 1,906 teacher visits, each teacher leaving the store with an average of $475 in free resources every time they shop!   The total value of school supplies distributed was $905,350.  These numbers represent significant increases from the previous school year.

 

Report to the Community

View or Download the Community Report in PDF Format:

Free 2 Teach 2015 – 2016 Community Report

 

For a closer look at the numbers, view our latest Report Cards and listing of Schools We Serve.

 

Meeting Teacher Needs

Our 2015 teacher survey reported high praise from teachers who have shopped at the Free 2 Teach store. Here’s what some of them had to say:

I can’t rate my first experience high enough! The women that worked that day went way out of their way to provide the exact materials that my students needed!
4/27/2015 4:21 PM

I absolutely LOVE Free 2 Teach! Teachers spend so much money out of pocket for their classrooms. It’s nice to have free items available. The staff is always so friendly and helpful. They have lots of suggestions on how to use items in different, out of the box ways. Love it! Thanks so much!
4/27/2015 8:43 AM

Keep up the AWESOME work. What an invaluable resource for teachers. THANK YOU!
4/27/2015 8:38 AM

 

But, we also know that some teachers find it difficult to fit shopping at the Free 2 Teach store into their busy week-day schedules.

When asked, “Would you like Saturday as a shopping day option?”  77% responded “Yes”.

In order to better serve our teachers, for the 2015 – 2016 school year, the Free 2 Teach store will be open the first Saturday of the month!

 

The Reality

Free 2 Teach is committed to easing the personal financial burden of teachers.  We know that due to budget constraints, teachers all too often spend a significant amount of their own money to provide supplies and resources for their classrooms and students.

Research reveals that prior to proration in 2008, teachers received a $525 allocation for classroom supplies[1].  In 2010, teachers received $0 for supplies[2].  In 2013-2014, teachers received a $300 allocation and in 2-14-2015 they received $310[3].  Today, this allocation has still not returned to pre-proration levels.

This lack of funding, in combination with the reality that nearly twenty percent of Madison county children live in poverty, illustrates a growing crisis for our teachers[4].

1.  “Teachers lament lack of money for needed school supplies” The Tuscaloosa News.  August 8, 2007.
2.  “Classroom Cuts:  Donations Make up the Difference in Alabaster.”  ABC33/40. May 1, 2010.
3.  Alabama State Department of Education FYE 2015.  http://www.alsde.edu/
4.  United States Department of Agriculture. http://www.ers.usda.gov/data-products/county-level-data-sets/poverty.aspx

But what data cannot describe is the incredible emotional burden placed onto our teachers when they are forced to make a choice between spending their own money or simply not providing supplies for their students.  Data also cannot describe the outpouring of appreciation expressed by teachers and their students when they receive free supplies from Free 2 Teach.  This can only be described through their own words.

 

The Response

I am finding that more and more students come without supplies and I appreciate all the materials F2T has to offer.
F2T Teacher Survey, 4/27/2015 9:18 AM

I thank you for the opportunity to provide my low income students with much needed supplies without draining my wallet.
F2T Teacher Survey, 4/27/2015 11:00 AM

 

 

Click here to read more inspiring teacher and student testimonials