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Knox County Teachers get boost from U.S. Cellular
December 1, 2010

springhill elementary
Jack Brundige, director of sales for U.S. Cellular in Tennessee, visits Springhill Elementary School to congratulate teachers who received funding for classroom projects posted on through the company's Calling All Teachers program. U.S. Cellular provided nearly $55,000 worth of funding for classroom projects across East Tennessee, including nearly $16,000 worth of projects in Knox County Schools. Pictured from left to right: Jack Brundige and Springhill Elementary School teachers Amy Plumlee, Janice McConnell, Pam Syck and Susan Baumann.

Recently 34 teachers in Knox County received the exciting news from U.S. Cellular that their classroom projects had been funded through the company's Calling All Teachers campaign. For a second year, the wireless carrier partnered with philanthropic website to fund $1 million in creative and impactful classroom projects submitted by public school teachers. The local donation of nearly $16,000 will benefit more than 2,500 students in Knox County.

"Positive initiatives that support outstanding teachers can directly impact the success of our children," said Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett. "We appreciate the business community for recognizing education as an important priority."

In total, more than 90 teachers across East Tennessee received nearly $55,000 in funding for their classroom projects, impacting more than 9,200 students in the region. In Knox County, classroom projects were funded at Ball Camp Elementary School, Bearden Middle School, Bearden High School, Belle Morris Elementary School, Blue Grass Elementary School, Christenberry Elementary School, East Knox County Elementary School, Fair Garden Family Community Center, Gresham Middle School, Halls Elementary School, Hardin Valley Academy, Karns Elementary School, Lonsdale Elementary School, Maynard Elementary School, New Hopewell Elementary School, Pleasant Ridge Elementary School, Pond Gap Elementary School, Powell Elementary School, Powell High School, Ritta Elementary School, Rocky Hill Elementary School, Shannondale Elementary School, Spring Hill Elementary School, Sunnyview Primary School and West High School.

U.S. Cellular's giving strategy is focused on education and the pressing needs of schools. Lack of funding has caused many of them to eliminate critical programs and operate on limited resources. Calling All Teachers is one of the initiatives the phone company developed to offer schools help with these financial challenges.

"Teachers play a big role in the future of our children," said Jack Brundige, director of sales for U.S. Cellular in Tennessee. "We are glad to support them because we know they work hard to make every child's learning experience meaningful and fun."

Teachers across the country posted classroom projects that ranged from the basic to the technically advanced. Classrooms in Knox County received funding for a variety items including a class set of dictionaries and thesauri, graphic novels, hands-on science and math activities, a digital camera and supplies to repair and maintain band instruments. One local elementary school class will get copies of African-American biographies for a Black History Month project, and students in a high school desktop publishing course will enjoy a new color printer.

"U.S. Cellular's continued support of education is definitely making an impact in schools across the nation," said Charles Best, founder and CEO of "The company's donations from both last year and this year allow teachers to do more in the classroom, and our children reap the benefits."

U.S. Cellular made the commitment to invest millions in education during 2009-10 through its Calling All Communities and Calling all Teachers campaigns. In 2009, Bearden High School in Knoxville was named a Calling All Communities Champion and received $100,000.

Recently, the company introduced The Belief Project to address common frustrations consumers have with the wireless industry. This initiative also complements U.S. Cellular's growing catalog of cutting-edge phones, all backed by its nationwide 3G network. To learn more about the company's support of education and The Belief Project, visit or check Facebook.

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