Reno-Sparks – Operation School Bell® Hard at Work To Purchase Clothing for Students

Noted author Vince Gowman said, “You cannot make children learn. You can only provide them the right conditions for learning to happen.” Since its beginning, Operation School Bell® has diligently worked to do just that through building self-esteem in the children it serves. Although large shopping events did not take place this year, School Bell continues to look for innovative ways to provide much needed clothing to students who attend Washoe County schools and are in need of our help.

School Bell co-chairs Fran Fricke and Barbara Tomac have identified nine schools to participate in a school uniform/spirit shirt program.

“Not all of these nine schools are uniform schools; however, they have a high percentage of free/reduced lunch students but are not covered under Title I money,” Fricke said. “Those schools that don’t require uniforms will receive spirit shirts with the school’s mascot.”

One of these schools Clayton Middle School will receive a new school uniform polo shirt and one hooded sweatshirt for each of its 490 students. Principal Rhonda Turnipseed in her first year at Clayton expressed gratitude to Assistance League for this generous donation.

“This donation takes so much financial pressure off of our families and our school,” Principal Turnipseed said. “Operation School Bell® is such a wonderful community partner to Clayton Middle School.”

In fact, the school wanted to showcase its appreciation for parents and the entire community to see by displaying its thanks on the school’s marquee.

“Donations of this sort make us feel supported and connected to our community,” Principal Turnipseed said. “We plan on taking a giant (socially distanced) photo once our students get their sweatshirts and will post it on our website.”

Through its budget this year, the program has purchased shirts for 3,386 Washoe County students and plans to add at least four more schools in March.