The sixth annual “Change Wars…Battle for Education” began at the North Platte Public Schools on Sept. 13 and continues to Sept. 20. 

Organizers encourage residents to pitch in.

“It’s time to make change count,” said Terri Burchell, Executive Director of the North Platte Public Schools Foundation.

“Turn over the couch cushions and guard your piggy banks because the students in the North Platte Public Schools are leaving nothing unturned as they begin this fundraiser,” Burchell said.

All seven North Platte elementary schools, plus Madison and Adams Middle Schools and the high school are participating in the seven-day challenge. Proceeds go to their schools and for grants for teachers, and the “Prepared to Learn Fund” to help students have essential items for school.  

Each classroom in the elementary schools, along with Team Smart Time at Madison), Team Drive at Adams) and Team Bulldog Time at the high school will bring in as much change as they can each day.  Family and friends of the schools are welcome to donate on-line to or stop at First Interstate Bank to leave change for a favorite school and/or classroom.

The top three teams will receive prize money — $350 for first, $200 for second and $100 for third. The top three classrooms bringing in the most can win money for their classroom. In addition, the school that collects the most change will receive a discretionary school-use prize of $500 to be used in the school, as well as the title of 2023 Change Wars Champion. 

The top teacher in each elementary building, the top three teachers at the middle schools and the top three teachers at the high school will each receive a $100 Wal-Mart gift card, thanks to a generous donation from Integrated Power Company. Many of the schools are raising money to upgrade outdoor spaces for students. 

Last year’s event brought in just over $13,000, Burchell said.

Each school will receive 70% of the amount that they raise. Also, this year each elementary school will receive a matching donation of up to $250 from the Gwen Dickenson Estate. Dickenson retired in 1996 as a long-time, active first grade teacher and passed away Nov. 1, 2022.

Burchell said that’s not all.

“Students from the winning elementary classrooms will celebrate on Sept. 22 before the Bulldog vs. Kearney football game. Little Bulldog tickets will be given to students to attend the Backyard BBQ and the NPHS football game.” 

All elementary schools will be recognized in a victory march at 6:15 p.m. before the game.

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