Our Opinion: Adopting a magical idea for classrooms

Good ideas are easy to recognize.

They’re the ones that are so simple and practical you wish you’d thought of them first and wonder why you didn’t.

The adopt-a-classroom program to aid tornado-devastated Joplin schools is such an idea.

The program — which is gathering momentum not only nationwide, but worldwide — offers an opportunity for schools to assist schools destroyed by disasters.

Although public schools are supported by taxpayers, teachers traditionally dig into their own wallets and pocketbooks to decorate classrooms or purchase supplementary education materials.

The National Education Association estimates teachers spend $1,200 annually for classroom items. The association notes the personal spending is not covered by insurance.

The ripple effect of those losses has prompted a school within the Jefferson City School District to adopt a Joplin classroom.

North Elementary School has established an account at Central Bank locations and is collecting donations and raising funds. The goal is to raise $2,400 for the account designated: North School — Adopt a Joplin Classroom.

“The most important thing is for classrooms to look like classrooms when students return this fall,” said North School Principal Barb Martin, “and we want to be a part of that for a classroom.”

A classroom is more than a collection of desks, books, materials and decorations. A classroom also is venue where teachers, students and parents gather to share the magical experience of education.

Adopt-a-classroom provides a practical way to restore a measure of that magic.

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