B-L district teachers donate to wear denim
Teachers, administrators and staff across the Basehor-Linwood school district are ditching the dress pants and pantyhose for a good cause this week.
"Denim for Dollars," a fundraiser organized by the Association of Basehor-Linwood Educators tempted teachers with an offer they almost couldn't refuse for Scholarship Week -- donate money to go toward student scholarships and earn the right to wear jeans all week.
"Actually, you don't have to do too much to convince teachers to want to wear jeans," said Candice Cameron, the Glenwood Ridge Elementary School teacher and ABLE representative who thought of the idea. "We've done some similar fundraisers in the past within the school. I knew that it goes over so well in our building, and I knew it would go over just as well in the whole district."
Made up of about 80 Basehor-Linwood school district certified teachers, ABLE organizes a fundraiser each quarter to raise money for the scholarship it awards each year to a graduating senior who is interested in going into the education field.
Participating teachers paid either $3 per day or $10 for the whole week to wear jeans. Along with jeans, teachers may also be seen wearing buttons that say, "Denim for Dollars, I donated, ABLE Scholarship Week."
"Everybody loves jeans," said Suzette Downing, Basehor Elementary School teacher and ABLE representative. "It's been a big hit."
While the district dress code only allows for casual Fridays, seeing their teachers in jeans all week has students asking questions, said Stephanie Harris, ABLE representative at Basehor-Linwood High School.
"They're really curious as to why we're wearing jeans," she said.
Harris said students will apply for scholarships in early 2008 and a scholarship committee will review those applications. Students interested in the education field are considered for the ABLE scholarships and find out if they received one in late spring.
The final amount of money raised will not be known until the end of the week, but it is expected to be more than $800.
"At the high school we had around $300 and that was just our building," Harris said. "I think we're hoping to raise between $750 and $1,000."
The group also hopes to grow "Denim for Dollars" and make it an annual fundraiser.
"We're not having to go out and sell anything and pretty much everybody has jeans," Cameron said. "It's just a really simple way to get the most bang for our buck."
"It should draw attention to the fact that we hope some of our students become teachers," Downing said.