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Carolina Panthers, partners make mid-year gift for school supplies
$120,000 donation to Classroom Central
 
Published Tuesday, February 11, 2020 7:00 pm
by Ashley Mahoney | The Charlotte Post

PHOTO | ASHLEY MAHONEY
Carolina Panthers owner David Tepper presents a check to Classroom Central to provide school supplies to Classroom Central in 17 Title I Charlotte-Mecklenburg schools.

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Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools teachers scored a touchdown today.

A mid-year boost in the form of a $120,000 donation from the David A. Tepper Charitable Foundation, John M. Belk Endowment and Carolina Panthers will provide school supplies through Classroom Central to 800 elementary classrooms in 17 Title I CMS schools.

 “Classroom Central provides free teaching resources and all kinds of educational classroom supplies for teachers—100 percent free of charge,” said Classroom Central Executive Director Karen Calder. “The gift here today is really going to help them with the basic school supplies that every teacher who was here today…will receive a full set of classroom supplies, so enough for every student in their classroom, and really finish out the school year strong.”

Sixty CMS teachers attended a reveal in the Panthers’ locker room, where franchise owner David Tepper made the announcement following offensive tackle Taylor Moton’s pre-game style pep talk.

Both spoke to the significance of educators in their lives, particularly their mothers. Tepper touched on how his mother, Roberta Tepper, would often reach into her own pocket to provide for her students, not just in the classroom, but outside as well. She taught at a low-income school and would take them out for a hamburger at Eat’n Park, a restaurant in Pittsburgh.

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“My mother had the first open classroom in Pittsburgh,” said Tepper, whose mother turns 88 this year.

He also touched on other family members serving as educators, such as his daughter and aunt.

Many teachers have to reach into their pocket, as supplies often runout midway through the year. The donation means they don’t have to.

“We were a middle class, lower-middle class family,” Tepper said. “So it means something then that she reached in her own pocket, and I know it means something to these people, because they’re doing the same things, I’m sure. Doing this is like a second half of the year booster for these teachers. It’s a big deal for me.”

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