Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Friday, December 14, 2007

Wal-Mart and Public Schools: The Truth

On October 1, 2007, Kathleen Larson, a teacher of the deaf at Evergreen High School in Vancouver, was named Teacher of the Year in Washington in the 12th annual Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club State Teacher of the Year program. The school received a $10,000 grant from the Wal-Mart Foundation in Larson's honor.

Wal-Mart’s Teacher of the Year program is one of the largest teacher recognition efforts in the country, giving back more than $5 million this year alone to the schools of winning teachers. Since the Teacher of the Year program began in 1995, Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has honored nearly 30,000 teachers nationwide and donated more than $22 million to local schools. In 2006, the company provided more than $57 million in support of educational initiatives, including scholarship assistance, literacy programs, teacher recognition awards and general community educational programs. The company has awarded more than $83 million in scholarships alone since 1981. In addition, Wal-Mart is also a strong supporter of many national scholarship programs such as the United Negro College Fund, the Hispanic Scholarship Fund, the National Indian Education Association and the National Urban League.

For example, the Wal-Mart Foundation awards more than $6 million annually to graduating high school seniors throughout the country. For 27 years, the Sam Walton Community Scholarship program has provided assistance to students trying to find a way to pay for college. Since its inception, the program has awarded more than $64 million to approximately 64,000 students. To be eligible for consideration, a student must be a graduating high school senor, a permanent legal resident of the U.S. and have a minimum grade point average of 2.5. The Scholarship Program Administrators (SPA) will select winners based on financial need, academic record, and school and community involvement.

According to data from the Whitman County Assessors Office, the Pullman School District will receive an extra $112,784.00 a year from the property taxes paid by a Wal-Mart Supercenter in Pullman.

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1 comment:

Mr. C. said...


I attended a Moscow School District meeting back in Jan 2006.

See Wal-Mart Giving Back to Moscow School District.

Moscow Junior High School received a $1,000 donation from the Wal-Mart Foundation.

There was no thank you. Nothing more than listing it in the minutes of the meeting.

I could have screamed at the ingratitude.