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Making good use of CARES funding

The start of a new school year brings the stress of buying new school clothes and school supplies.

Both of these tasks come with a heavy toll on our wallets. Over the weekend, Alabama held its annual sales tax holiday that eliminated the sales tax for many of the needed school supplies. However, this year, we are not sure what school is going to look like.

Last week at the Chambers County School District meeting, it was announced that thanks to the CARES Act funding, every student in the Chambers County School District will receive a kit of school supplies filled with items appropriate for their specific grade level.

The supplies are being distributed through an organization known as “Kits for Kidz,” providers of essential school supplies for underprivileged students in conjunction with numerous charitable partners.

“The amount of funding dedicated for this effort totals $130,000,” Chambers County School Superintendent Dr. Kelli Hodge said in a press release. “The kits contain all the basic items that parents would normally purchase for their children prior to the beginning of the school year. We are proud to offer this assistance to families who have been adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

This might be the biggest news to come out of a school board meeting to date. Why? Quite simply, families have been hit very hard financially at the hands of the COVID-19 pandemic.

This is one example of how to properly use CARES Act funding — put where it benefits the students and families. Now, this will certainly not cover supplies for the entire year.

We realize that schools tend to go through pens, pencils and paper quickly, but this is a much-needed start and a place where parents can find some savings for other items they may not otherwise have been able to purchase.