Backpack giveaway helps South Philadelphia students

SOUTH PHILADELPHIA - September 8, 2013

"I got two books and I got paper for my binder," Syhir Manley, 6th grader.

It was the third day of the giveaway, sponsored by City Councilmen Kenyatta Johnson and Jim Kenney. Overall, they gave away nearly 1,000 donated bags.

"As we focus on making sure we find permanent long-term funding for public education, we thought it would be important to encourage our students and our parents to start off the school year on a good note," said Councilman Johnson.

The kids were very excited - both about the backpacks, and about starting the new school year on Monday.

"I just can't believe that I'm going to 5th grade. I'm so excited to go back to school," said Ryan Turner, 5th grader.

And the parents were grateful to be able to cross a few items off their long - and expensive - back-to-school shopping lists.

"It's a really great opportunity for all the people who live here, especially with the budget cuts with the district. Teachers have put out so much money and parents who are also teachers - so it's such a great help," said Delilah Baines-Washington.

With all the cuts going into effect for Philadelphia schools, it will be challenging but these children are off to a great start.

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