Mike Morse Law firm to continue its Project BackPack program for next school year, focusing on the students who need extra support. For the last six years, the project has offered a free backpack filled with school supplies to every single student in the Detroit public schools Community district.
In order to enroll in the program, students need to have a valid I.D., a high school diploma, and a social security number. They also need to attend school in a Detroit public school. The idea is that each student can receive one backpack per year and will benefit from having extra books and other supplies during the school year. It was an idea that has caught on with families across the country, as well as with schools in different cities throughout the U.S.
Mike Morse’s partner in the new project, Lisa O’Donnell, says it’s important for families and schools to have an extra supply of materials when the weather begins to turn cold. “You don’t want to take your children outside in these weather conditions with snow flakes,” she says. “It’s especially tough in the winter to get their hands and arms warm enough without them getting too cold.
There is a lot of help that can be found from a volunteer from the Michigan State Education Association, said Mike Morse. “They know how important having extra resources is and how important it is to have resources available to the kids that are most impacted by the recession,” he said. Many of the same volunteers who are helping in the school voucher program are now involved in this project, said Morse. “When you have a group working for a common cause, it’s easier to reach out to other groups that may be experiencing similar problems.”
Morse said he hopes that his new partnership with the state Education Association can help schools in other areas in the state. “The project has helped more than a few families to overcome some challenges because of the help we received from state education officials,” he said. He hopes that his partnership with the Michigan State Education Association can be similar to the vouchers program. “I hope to expand it into areas that have greater need and more money,” he said. The goal is to help all students in the public school district, regardless of whether they live in poverty or have trouble paying their bills.
So far, more than a few schools across the U.S. have received money from the state Education Association. The Michigan State Police, for example, received $10 million, according to the state. If the association continues its work with the Project Backpack, then it might help a school in Detroit in the future receive money for programs. If all goes well for Morse and his partners in Michigan, the partnership could continue on in other areas.