By Mike Goodman

Amidon-Bowen Elementary School was recently ranked DC Public Schools’ most funded school from donations through www.DonorsChoose.org. To date, the charity website has delivered resources for 553 projects at the school.

“Like many schools, we have needs that cannot be met through our school budget or traditional fundraising. DonorsChoose is a resource that ensures that our students and teachers have the tools and materials they need,” says Principal TaMikka Sykes. “The kindness and generosity of the donors—community supporters and strangers—reminds us that we have a virtual village supporting our work. It goes a long way to boost teacher morale.”

The 553 Amidon-Bowen projects total nearly $300,000. At the district level, DC Public Schools have had 10,600 projects funded from just over 3,000 DC teachers. That is $7.1 million, 76% of which came from donors outside of DC. 

Keya Wondwossen, Director of Advocacy and Public Partnerships at DonorsChoose, states, “We’re so inspired by Principal Sykes and all of the teachers at Amidon-Bowen Elementary School for their commitment to going above and beyond for their students. The resources they’ve secured through DonorsChoose are a reflection of the school’s leadership and determination to provide the best education possible.”

Since 2000, nationwide, more than 4.7 million DonorsChoose people and partners have contributed $1 billion to support 1.8 million teacher requests for classroom resources and experiences. Charity Navigator and GuideStar have awarded DonorsChoose, a 501(c)3 nonprofit, their highest ratings for transparency and accountability.

“Amidon-Bowen is extremely grateful for the generosity of our community. Supporting projects on DonorsChoose provides our teachers with the resources necessary to continuously challenge our children to be creative and think outside of the box. Thank you all so much!” says Nicole Renard, President of the Amidon-Bowen Parent-Teacher Association.

Examples of Amidon-Bowen projects that have received funding through DonorsChoose include:

  • We Can Do Virtually Anything! Whiteboards, markers, colored pencils, mechanical pencils and composition notebooks to assist with student learning from home;
  • Art at Home! Lyra Opaque Watercolor Pan Set, Prang Washable Watercolor Set, and paint brushes so students can continue to be successful artists during virtual learning;
  • Playing With Math! Math manipulatives such as base ten blocks, unifix cubes, clocks, shapes, measurement kit, counters, snap cubes, fraction towers, hundreds charts to engage in virtual group experiences and at-home independent enrichment experiences;
  • Warm Bodies for Warm Hearts & Minds: 20 sets of cold weather compression tops and bottoms, so that students can compete at the highest level without being uncomfortable from the elements and cold;
  • The Power of Choice: Getting Comfy While Reading and Writing! Classroom table and flexible seating options to ensure students all have a seat that meets their needs;
  • Fuel Power for Strong Brains: Healthy snacks to send home and to help students stay focused throughout the school day; and
  • Coding in Kindergarten! Materials to help students learn how to code. Mats that go along with Bee Bot robots and help students learn how to program/code the Bee Bots.

“I would encourage others to get involved and support projects at your local schools. On behalf of the students, staff, and families at Amidon-Bowen ES, I would like to thank everyone who has sponsored a project. Your support means we can provide high-quality programming to all students regardless of income,” says Principal Sykes.

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