BACK TO SCHOOL AUTHORITY: Hartford families get help with school supplies

Hartford Public Schools to give students free school supplies
Published: Aug. 10, 2022 at 6:48 PM EDT
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HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) - Students in Hartford return to class on August 29.

Families are getting school supplies, but right now everything is costing extra.

“As parents we have to keep pushing and do the best that we can to kinda like work it out,” said Hartford Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Leslie Torres-Rodriguez.

As the new school year quickly approaches, Thierry Gation has already started getting some school supplies for his 11-year-old son and 6-year-old daughter.

“So the smaller supplies, pencils and all that. These different things, we start to already accumulate some of these things so that they make sure they have them,” said Thierry, of Hartford.

It’s no surprise that supplies are costing more this year.

The National Retail Federation says families are expected to spend 40-percent more on school supplies this year, almost $170 per child.

“When we do go out, we know exactly what the budget is for us to spend,” said Thierry.

Families like Thierry’s are shopping smart.

“So if we can find something at the store where it’s a lesser price, we’ll do that instead of going to a store that’s a major brand store and we’re going to pay a lot more for it,” said Thierry.

They’re also getting help with those expenses.

The Hartford school district is hosting a back-to-school celebration at Dunkin’ Donuts Park on Tuesday, August 16 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Torres-Rodriguez says families can pick up free backpacks and school supplies for all students within the district.

“We will have a ton of supplies, our bookbags are going to be available for families. Our notebooks, our pencils, we have uniforms. With inflation hitting a lot of families hard, the school system is focused on helping ease the pain,” said Torres-Rodriguez. “We care and we want to see all of our students succeed. And we’re here to commit and we’re trying to make it happen.”

“Beyond that event, the district also has a welcome center to help struggling families,” Torres-Rodriguez added. “We assist families with footwear, we assist families with at times, personal hygiene supplies. We always encourage families to call the welcome center and we will figure it out.”

To get in touch with the welcome center, click here.