Cypress, TX News – Cy Falls and Cy Woods Hold Book Drive Competition for Woodard Elementary

Cypress, TX News (May 20, 2015) – In an effort to ensure that teachers at their soon-to-open feeder school, Woodard Elementary School, have adequate classroom libraries and arts supplies for the start of school in August, students at Cypress Falls and Cypress Woods high schools are holding a gently used book and art supply drive throughout the month of May.

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What started as a seed idea from Liz Evans, reading/language arts curriculum coach, and Sarah Sanders, curriculum coordinator for art education, grew into a community service project that will benefit both area high schools in the long term.

According to Woodard Principal Susan Brenz, she set the lofty goal of 250 classroom library books per reading teacher, and Cypress Falls Principal Becky Denton and Cypress Woods Associate Principal Dirk Heath accepted the challenge on behalf of their campuses.

“It has been an unbelievable community effort from both feeder schools,” Brenz said. “I am proud to be part of such a large community outreach effort that will surely set the tone for the types of support new campuses can garner from their feeder schools in the future.”

CFISD’s 54th elementary campus, Sadie Woodard Elementary School, is under construction in the Alder Trails subdivision at Barker Cypress Road and Cypress N. Houston Blvd., and will open for the 2015-2016 school year. Its students will eventually feed into both Cypress Falls and Cypress Woods.

The schools have turned the challenge into a friendly competition to see who can collect the most books between May 4-29.

According to Cypress Falls English teacher Miranda Fairman, the school has reached out to community partners such as the Langham Creek Family YMCA, Houston’s First Baptist Church, Half-Price Books, Jerry’s Artarama, Lone Star College—CyFair’s business office and the Girl Scouts of San Jacinto to assist in collection and donation efforts. Bahama Bucks’ Telge Road location hosted a benefit night on May 9, raising $205 for Cypress Falls to purchase books for Woodard. Another Bahama Bucks benefit night is scheduled for May 20 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the FM 529 location.

“Our clubs are competing to see which group can collect the most books, and the staff is sharing the information with their social networks,” Fairman said. “One teacher has collected more than 50 books by having his wife mention the drive to her co-workers. We’re excited about the opportunity to show some love to Woodard and help them have a great start. We are one!”

As of May 12, Cypress Falls had collected approximately 700 books along with some art supplies. Donations from the public will be accepted through May 29 at the school, as well as three Bahama Bucks locations (Telge, Clay and FM 529), the Langham Creek Family YMCA, the LSC—CyFair business office and Jerry’s Artarama in Willowbrook.

The Cypress Woods Book Club has taken the lead on the schoolwide donation efforts, posting flyers outside all English classrooms while encouraging students to donate books. The Cypress Woods National Honor Society and Key Club students have helped support the drive through promotion and collection efforts, and lunchtime announcements have amped up the school’s competitive spirit.

According to Cypress Woods Associate Principal Dirk Heath, more than 2,000 books have already been collected for Woodard.

“The Cypress Woods community is thrilled to be a part of building classroom libraries for Sadie Woodard Elementary School,” he said. “Wildcats read and we are eager to spread that love of reading with our future Wildcats by sharing some of our favorite titles from childhood through this book drive. Our Wildcats always aim for 212!”

Cypress Woods will accept book donations at the front receptionist desk of the school through May 29.

Brenz said she has been overwhelmed by the generosity from both CFISD high schools.

“The results thus far indicate that this community can accomplish anything when they join together for such an amazing cause,” Brenz said. “On behalf of Woodard Elementary students, teachers, parents and community, I want everyone to know what this support means to all of us who serve children in the classroom. You all are the best!”