Karnack ISD students won’t be traveling to school on the first day of the 2019-20 school year with backpacks loaded down with school supplies. For the second year in a row, the students’ school supplies will be provided to them for free and set up in their classrooms.

“This is our second year that we are blessed to be able to do this for our students and parents,” Karnack ISD Superintendent Amy Dickson said on Wednesday. “We will provide everything on the teachers’ supply lists, except backpacks, lunchboxes and uniforms.”

Karnack ISD is able to purchase and provide the school supplies for each of the district’s students, thanks to a combination of federal and local funds, as well as local donations, Dickson said.

The free school supplies provided by the district for each student, save Karnack ISD parents an average of $50 per student.

“As a mom, I know that August is an expense month for parents,” Dickson said.

Dickson said the district is planning to provide supplies for about 130 students, the number of the district’s student enrollment last school year, but if a new student arrives, supplies will provided for that student as well.

“We shop all year long when things go on sale,” she said. “We bought some throughout the year and then priced quotes from Amazon, Walmart and an office supply store and were able to select the best quote and order the rest of the supplies we need.”

Dickson said she’s happy her district was able to help the students and parents out in this way this year.

“When the students show up on the first day, their supplies will be in their classroom for them,” she said. “We are so excited to be able to help our parents out in this way.”

Marshall ISD is also undertaking the task of trying to provide school supplies for its students through its “Pack the Bus” school supply drive initiative, which seeks to provide a complete set of needed school supplies for every single Marshall ISD elementary school student district-wide.

More than a dozen area churches, organizations, groups and businesses have signed on to provide school supplies or donations as part of the “Pack the Bus” initiative, though many more sponsors and donations are still needed.

The school supplies needed have been broken down by type of supply, campus and number of students, allowing organizations to sign on for providing one needed supply or the money to buy the supply for a particular grade or campus.

Currently, there are 2,657 elementary students in grades pre-kindergarten through fifth-grade enrolled in Marshall ISD.

The three ways to contribute to “Pack The Bus” are by sponsoring, donating supplies or making a monetary donation.

To donate or to drop off collected supplies, contact Marshall ISD spokesman David Weaver at 903-927-8727 or weaverds@marshallisd.com. Contacts can also be made to Marshall ISD’s Special Assistant to the Superintendent Jessica Scott at 903-927-8713 or scottjl@marshallisd.com and Marshall ISD Administrative Assistant to the Superintendent Ana Ramirez at 903-927-8701 or ramireza@marshallisd.com.

To see what supplies are spoken for, collected or still needed and in what quantities, see an updated list available on the Marshall ISD website at www.marshallisd.com.