Kids, teachers raise $146,000 for county’s schools

Regions Bank representative Jonathan Walsky, left, and Shelby County School Superintendent Randy Fuller, right, recognize Cameron Jones from Helena Middle School during a May 1 reception. Jones sold the most coupon books during a recent fundraiser. (Reporter Photo/Neal Wagner)

Regions Bank representative Jonathan Walsky, left, and Shelby County School Superintendent Randy Fuller, right, recognize Cameron Jones from Helena Middle School during a May 1 reception. Jones sold the most coupon books during a recent fundraiser. (Reporter Photo/Neal Wagner)

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

Classrooms throughout the Shelby County School System will get items ranging from Kindle Fires to smart gardening programs after the school district’s students and teachers raised $146,000 through a coupon book fundraiser.

Through the annual Coupons for Classrooms fundraiser, which was sponsored by the Greater Shelby County Education Foundation, school district teachers and coordinators encouraged their students to sell as many coupon books as possible.

At the end of the campaign, the program raised about $112,000 to benefit Shelby County Schools and $34,000 to help fund the Education foundation’s mini-grant program.

“The Coupons for Classrooms campaign is the largest fundraiser we do,” said Education Foundation Community Relations Director Kendall Williams, noting this year’s coupon book campaign faced several obstacles related to the late January snowstorm.

Williams and Shelby County School Superintendent Randy Fuller recognized the top-selling students, teachers and coordinators during a May 1 reception at the Shelby County Instructional Services Center in Alabaster.

Helena Middle School student Cameron Jones was the top-selling student, and won $2,000 in gift cards, a Regions Bank bike, an iPad Mini and a prize pack containing tickets to Six Flags Over Georgia, Birmingham Barons games, the McWayne Science Center, the Birmingham Zoo and a concert at the Oak Mountain Amphitheatre.

Jones was followed by her sister, Cylie, from Helena Intermediate, Chloe Lykes from Calera Elementary, Elaina Mitchell from Chelsea Middle, John Patrick Snyder from Calera Elementary and Keeley Pownall from Chelsea High.

Ben West from Oak Mountain Elementary, Cortez Tolbert II from Calera Elementary, Kayla Lazrak from Riverchase Middle, Alex Carlisle from Oak Mountain High, Tyler Barton from Calera Elementary and Lydia McBride from Helena Elementary rounded out the student list.

The top teachers were Nicole Heim from Helena Intermediate, followed by Brenda Glass from Calera Elementary, Bruce Howland from Helena Middle, Casey Ford from Calera Elementary and Laurie Kapuya from Calera High.

The top coordinators were Tonya Judson from Oak Mountain Intermediate, followed by Kelly Snyder from Calera Elementary, Mindy Miller from Oak Mountain Elementary, Clare Cipriano from Helena Elementary and Angela Laughlin from Forest Oaks Elementary.

Fuller and Williams also recognized teachers who received mini grants from nearly every Shelby County school. The grants will fund everything from mock crime scene investigation programs to iPad-focused reading programs.