TONTITOWN -- City departments are competing to provide school supplies for Rollins Elementary School of Innovation students.
"Our goal is to help ease the financial burden of back to school for families who are struggling," said Danielle DeLille, Police Department warrants officer. "We know there are families here in NWA who cannot afford lunches for their kids or new school supplies due to the current state of our economy. We just want to help ease that financial burden as much as we can."
Tontitown's Police Department, Emergency Medical Service, Fire Department and city hall are competing to see which can raise the most school supplies or monetary donations now through noon Aug. 13, said DeLille.
Jared Cleveland, superintendent of the Springdale School District, said he's thrilled by the support Tontitown community leaders have shown Rollins Elementary School of Innovation, which opens this month at the corner of East Fletcher Avenue and South Barrington Road.
"This school supply drive is an example of the incredibly generous community personality and spirit of Tontitown," Cleveland said.
Monetary donations will also be used to help pay delinquent school meal accounts for district students from previous years, DeLille said.
About 72% of district students qualify for free and reduced-price lunch, a common marker of poverty for districts, Cleveland said.
All district students will receive free meals through U.S. Department of Agriculture waivers this school year because of the covid-19 pandemic, according to administrators.
This is the first year for the contest. The winning department will be treated to lunch by the losing departments, DeLille said.
Rollins Elementary was selected to receive the donations to recognize its first year of instruction, DeLille said.
"It's our inclusive way as a city of saying, 'Welcome to our community. We are glad you are here, and we support you,'" she said.
Make a donation
• City Hall: School supplies and monetary donations may be dropped off from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday in the lobby, 201 E. Henri De Tonti Blvd.
• Emergency Medical Service and Fire Department: School supplies and monetary donations may be made from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday at the Tontitown Fire Department or Emergency Medical Service, 141 S. Zulpo St.
• Police Department: School supplies may be dropped off in the box in the Tontitown Police Department lobby, 235 E. Henri De Tonti Blvd., 24 hours a day. Monetary donations may be dropped off in the department’s front lobby from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday or mailed to Tontitown Police Department P.O. Box 305, Tontitown, AR 72770.