Medley Warehouse Offers Teachers Useful Supplies At No Cost

It's a nondescript warehouse in Medley on the outside. On the inside, it sort of looks like a Home Depot store, except everything is free and all the merchandise is destined for public school classrooms. So what do they have?

"Everything, really, you never know what you're gonna get here, i always say it's a thrift store for teachers and you gotta come in, everything's in a box, and great teachers think outside the box," said Stacey de la Grana of the education fund.

This magical land where teachers shop for free study is called The Education Fund's Ocean Bank Center for Educational Materials.

All 22,000 Miami-Dade public school teachers are eligible to peruse the aisles here, looking for everything from basic supplies to more esoteric items they can use for art projects and for student rewards.

"There are clipboards, pencils, incentives for teachers' treasure box to motivate the students because it's so important to keep them focused, so it's a lot, it's a true blessing," said Sabine Pointe du Jour, who teaches at Oak Grove Elementary School.

de la Grana points out that the Eduction Fund does many things for teachers and schools.

"This is just one of the many programs that we do that's a resource for teachers so that they can save money and not use money out of their own pocket or send notes home to the kids to bring in supplies," de la Grana said.

It's no secret that the vast majority of public school teachers everywhere spend their own money on classroom supplies. That's been going on forever. The warehouse just reduces that burden.

"I spend 300 dollars every summer... just buying arts and crafts activities that will supplement their learning, so this ocean bank center is a great deal,"said Jocy Nery, a teacher at Coral Park Elementary.

Of course, the warehouse setup helps teachers set up their own classrooms, which in turn helps the students. You know who else benefits from this effort? The companies and people who donate all the supplies.

"We have seen amazing tings they have shown us, that they have done with the products we have donated, so actually it's very rewarding, it's a great feeling," said Marisel Caceres of All Florida Paper, which regularly donates surplus to the education supplies warehouse.

A great feeling, no doubt, for teachers to know someone out there in the private sector is supporting them. From pencils to paper, it all adds up.

The warehouse is located at 6890 NW 76 St., Medley, FL 33166, near the Palmetto Expressway (SR 826).

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