LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - The first day of school is just around the corner and teachers are in their classrooms, where some have been preparing all summer.
Cathy Sharp, a second grade ELAR teacher at Wester Elementary, spends time and money out of her own pocket getting ready.
"I usually come in way before duty starts back in July. Normally I come in about a couple times a week pretty much all summer," Sharp said.
Sharp said she spends a couple hundred dollars before every school year.
"More than I let on to my husband. There's just so many little things, like straws that the kids can put their pencils in so they don't roll away on the desk... There's decoration, lamination, card stock to print stuff on," Sharp said.
Sharp says the expense comes, not only at the beginning, but throughout the school year, when they are particularly thankful for outside organizations who step in to help.
"Having people in your community or community groups help out schools," Sharp said.
Communities in Schools - South Plains, or CIS, is one of those organizations that helps with student needs.
Program Director Monica Salas said, "We are using these school supplies to help our at risk students on those campuses to provide them with the basic supplies that they are going to need to get the year started. We are always looking for donations for school supplies not just now but throughout the school year."
CIS is on more than 50 school campuses here on the South Plains. They help with anything they can, including food and clothing to providing tutors and mentors.
CIS has handed out close to 350 backpacks full of school supplies just this school year.
"Anybody on those campuses, any students or families that need anything can go to those coordinators and let them know what they're in need of," Salas said.
CIS and teachers will gladly accept any donations that will help students thrive throughout the year.
Of the students involved in CIS, 97 percent of them graduate high school.
If you would like to enroll your child in the CIS program, check with your local school to see if they are a CIS campus and sign up at the school.
If you want to help your child's teacher with supplies throughout the year get in contact with them, they would love your support.