Businesses Partner with Lawton Schools
The Lawton Fort Sill Chamber of Commerce encourages local businesses, individuals and organizations like churches, to become partners with LPS schools.
Many schools in the district have business partners who provide the school with volunteers, donated items and services, and much more as a way to give back to the community.
Patty Neuwirth, chair of the Chamber’s Education Committee, said education partners offer coupons for goods and services that are given to students as prizes for accomplishments like being named student of the month, send people to act as required monitors for state standardized tests, have employees who read to elementary students and even help with landscaping.
She said the committee was dormant for some time, but has been active for about a year-anda-half. The committee is looking for more partners to join up with schools.
“We encourage businesses to adopt schools and vice-versa,” Neuwirth said.
She said representatives of the business meet with the principal of the school they choose to sponsor to discuss ways the business can help the school.
One of the missions of the Education Committee is to change the public misconception that LPS is a “bad” school district, said Debra Burch, Chamber president.
She said LPS is an excellent school district with many good teachers, that often has to do much with scarce resources.
Robbie Gillis, principal of Lincoln Elementary School, said her school’s many sponsors make it possible for her to provide students with a better educational experience.
The many partners of Lincoln include several churches, Santa Fe Steakhouse, Public Service Company of Oklahoma, two Masonic lodges, Sam’s Club, Ken’s Pharmacy and Fort Sill’s K-9 Motorcycle Club, among others.
The various partners have tutored students and been test monitors, provided snacks and school supplies for students, sponsored parties during holidays, bought coats for students and provided prizes for students who excel in academics and citizenship, and paid for bus fuel so students could take field trips, Gillis said.
“I can’t measure the value of it,” the principal said.
Because of partners in the community, she said her school never has to hold fundraisers.
To discuss becoming a partner with an LPS school of your choice, contact the Lawton-Fort Sill Chamber of Commerce, 355-3541 , or through its website, www.lawtonfortsillchamber.com .