The community of West has four school campuses and three were rendered unusable by last week’s deadly explosion at a fertilizer plant. West Intermediate school, designated for fourth and fifth grade students, was destroyed.
Debra Sue Oden, a fourth grade math teacher at Rush Elementary School, worried about those displaced students and how their teachers would keep them interested in learning without supplies.
Oden reached out to the fourth grade math teacher at West Intermediate and they developed a plan. Since then, students at Rush have been collecting supplies and making cards in support of West students.
"It is family, because we're educators and they're educators, we are like one and we are one big family." Oden said. "And I think that's what hit me so much is the fact that it was a school and it was a 4th and 5th grade campus specifically, and we have that here and I teach that grade level. So I just tried to put myself in her shoes."
Collection boxes were out at Rush's "Kite Night" on Thursday. The items donated were scheduled be driven to West Friday morning. Cash donations will still be accepted, which will also go directly to West victims.