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Teachers are known for dipping into their wallets and purses to pay for supplies for their classes. If construction paper or paintbrushes aren't in the school budget, they gladly sacrifice for the good of their students.
But this year, the needs in the financially struggling Grayson County school system required more than some spare change — it brought about a change in the way the community looks at funding education.
Ideally, a local government would have the ability to fund education for its children, with help from the state and federal government. But a combination of economic forces at the national, state and local levels resulted in deep cuts to public schools, which had very little fat left to trim.
Undaunted by this seemingly impossible situation, high school teacher Janet Mullins set out to raise $1 million for county student's needs — from field trips to markers; whatever they require but can't afford.
This "Million Dollar Miracle" campaign is gaining momentum day by day, and has already raised more than $3,000 from community and business donors.
While it's a shame that it has come to this — proceeds from car washes, dunking booths and T-shirt sales taking the place of state funding — Mullins and her growing army of volunteers deserve praise for taking on this monumental task.
Mullins, fed up with the debate over who's to blame for the financial fix, moved beyond finger-pointing and instead reached out a hand to help.
Mullins and her "Million Dollar Miracle" volunteers are setting an example for grassroots efforts that circumvent the governmental bureaucracy and just get the job done. Waiting around for those in Independence, Richmond or Washington to fix the problem would likely result, at best, in prolonged frustration.
Mullins is teaching her students — and parents, teachers and everyone else — an important lesson about self-sufficiency, dedication, tenacity and fighting for something you believe in.