Fill a Need: Community should follow teacher’s example

It’s true for entrepreneurs and for teachers: See a need; fill it.

In the case of Williamstown Elementary School third-grade teacher Jamie Deem, the need was for books. The new school’s book room needed restocking, and Deem was focused on finding books children would want to read. So she did a little work, applying for a grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation.

Now, $4,000 is on its way to help fill the need.

“Just being able to have those books to use as a resource for the kids, it give us more opportunities to allow the kids to have the books,” Deem said. “So we can send them home with the kids.”

Books will be sanitized between borrowers, too.

More importantly, they will refresh a collection that is at least ten years old, perhaps providing new motivation to kids who were not interested before.

Good for Deem, for understanding not only there was a need for books, but for the right kinds of books to spark children’s desire to read and learn.

But there is work yet to be done. While the $4,000 grant is a fantastic start, Deem said it would take $14,000 to fill all the shelves in the book room. Certainly there are other grants to pursue. Deem hit upon something important, however:

“Williamstown has always had a great community support when it comes to its kids, and when it comes to school first or kids first,” she said.

Surely local folks can find a way to help the new school fill those shelves with books that will better serve our children’s educational needs.


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