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GES library awarded $500 grant

On Tuesday, the Greenville Elementary School library received some help in bringing students into the 21st century.

The Walmart Foundation has recently awarded the library a $500 grant.

“It’s from the Walmart Foundation out of its local monies,” GES Media Specialist Jacqueline Thornton said. “Walmart has certain local money that it is able to give out within the community. I had spoken to the manager out there previously and he told me to go to the foundation and fill out the grant, and he said ‘I would be more than happy to help you.’”

Thornton and reading coach Michelle Barrow then wrote a grant based on the fact that the school is not receiving state allocations or technology funds to improve the library.

“We want to purchase two Kindles, and we’re trying to put our students forward into the 21st century,” Thornton said. “We want to create 21st century thinkers and learners and readers so we have to come up with these new gadgets.”

The ultimate goal for Thornton is to have enough Kindles for students to check out and take home.

“We have a big accelerated reader program and the ultimate goal is at the end of next year for students who meet all of their goals to put the names of all the third and fourth grade students in a hat and pull out one student from each grade and give them a Kindle to go home with to keep,” Thornton said. “We are rewarding them for reading. If we want to create lifelong readers, we have to start now.”

With tight funding across the state of Alabama for all school systems, Thornton said she is thankful to have local support in the community.

“It shows us that Walmart supports the school and supports the Butler County School System, period,” Thornton said. “Even though we have no state money or local monies for reading and the library, we’re still able to come up with a system of reading for our children and to make our students 21st century learners and thinkers.”