By Nicole Anderson, Executive Director of Philanthropy

As we celebrate Teacher Appreciation Week, we’re reminded of the incredible contributions teachers make to our children throughout their lives that, in turn, shape our country’s future. I know that I had many teachers who made a tremendous impact on my life, and helped get me to where I am today. Specifically, Mrs. Innis from 6th grade encouraged my passion for writing through her creative storytelling assignments that involved world travels and current events.

Over the past few months, AT&T has teamed up with DonorsChoose.org to do our small part to show how much we appreciate teachers across the country. DonorsChoose.org is an online platform that allows teachers to post projects for their classroom that need funding and then spread the word through email and social media to encourage others to donate.

Through a $350,000 gift to DonorsChoose.org, AT&T supported two matching campaigns – one for our employees and one for the public. These campaigns provided funding to 1,601 schools for 2,025 projects that teachers posted! Thanks to the 5,120 donors who were involved with this campaign, we were able to make the spring 2014 semester a little better for 241,346 students!

The projects that were funded include watercolor paper, classic novels, and bees for a lesson on cultivating honey. Each of these teachers is passionate about helping young people fall in love with learning and seeing their own potential, just like Mrs. Innis did for me.

Take a look at some of the children and their teachers who received items as a result of this campaign: Mr. Doolittle in Sacramento, Mrs. Henry in San Antonio and Mrs. Salivia in Atlanta.

I would like to personally thank each of you who so generously participated in our DonorsChoose.org campaign. Your contribution was truly a gift to teachers across the country, and to the students who they care so much about.

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