Students, teachers at Cayce school get $10,000 surprise

Teachers and students at Claude A. Taylor Elementary in Cayce were called to an all-school assembly Wednesday morning. But instead of talking about school spirit or rules and regulations, they were surprised with a donation of more than $10,000 in school supplies from Amazon.

Amazon donated more than $10,000 of supplies to Claude A. Taylor Elementary School in Cayce. (Photo provided)

Amazon donated more than $10,000 of supplies to Claude A. Taylor Elementary School in Cayce. (Photos provided)

“This was the work of several months of coordination behind the scenes,” said Principal Mary Lance Garrison. “Amazon’s donation came as a complete surprise to the entire school. We started our school year strong and this will help make it even stronger.”

The school’s cafeteria quickly filled with 52 teachers and 450 students from third- through fifth-grade classrooms. With the help of several school children, George Schultz, general manager of Amazon’s local fulfillment center, ripped through a giant orange bow to reveal a mountain of Amazon Smile boxes full of school supplies.

More than 50 teachers and 450 students unboxed their new supplies Wednesday morning. (Photo provided)

More than 50 teachers and 450 students unboxed their new supplies Wednesday morning. 

“Amazon is proud to support the communities where our employees live and work,” Schultz said. “We are excited to help share and celebrate the hard work of our teachers in Columbia who are doing everything they can to create a successful, engaging learning environment for their students.”

Teachers on average spend up to $1,500 of their own money on school supplies each year. These Amazon Smile boxes are meant to help shoulder that cost burden and included everything from daily essentials like hand sanitizer and tissue to art supplies, hula hoops and file drawers.

Over the summer, Principal Garrison secretly created a school supply wish list based on feedback from teachers. Associates from Amazon’s fulfillment center helped deliver boxes of school supplies to teachers who then opened the boxes with their students.

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