Pre-K drive tops $50,000

TUPELO – A private-sector initiative to raise $200,000 in pre-K scholarships for the Tupelo’s King Early Childhood Education Center has raised more than $50,000.
The center is the Tupelo Public School District’s program for 4-year-old students.
The fully funded scholarship effort will provide tuition for 40 students whose classes will otherwise be eliminated because of cutbacks in federal funds.
The effort is the work of the newly formed Committee of 200, which hopes to raise $1,000 scholarships from 200 individuals or businesses this summer.
A 13-member steering committee was appointed by TPSD Superintendent Randy Shaver. On the committee are Charles Bouldin, Grace Clark, Billy Crews, Ormella Cummings, John Oxford, Harry Rayburn, Donna Rumbarger, Taylor Sanders, Jane Spain, James Threadgill, Lee Tucker, Gerald Wages and Mitch Waycaster.
The Committee of 200 has received $51,900 in pledges from 45 individuals and businesses, co-chair Rayburn said. It will soon begin its formal solicitation efforts.
The scholarship fund has been established at the CREATE Foundation. All contributions are tax deductible and should be designated for Tupelo’s Early Childhood Education Fund. The cost for one child per year is $5,250.
The steering committee has a long-term goal of ensuring that the 4-year-old program is expanded and funded permanently regardless of federal funding efforts.

NEMS Daily Journal