Pecan Park Elementary students go home with free new shoes

Published: Mar. 23, 2023 at 7:40 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Don’t be surprised if your child comes home with new shoes if they attend Pecan Park Elementary.

The Jackson Public School District’s Partners in Education chose the school as the recipient of a donation from Federal Express and Operation Warm.

Kindergarteners to second graders left Pecan Park Elementary Thursday with a new pair of tennis shoes.

Excitement filled the air as Jackson Fed Ex volunteers checked the kids’ sizes, let them select a color, then helped them get laced.

“I’ll be picking green, because it’s my favorite color,” said Mateo Arguello.

The second grader wants to make his shoes a gift.

“I think it’s a great idea, and it was my opportunity to give new shoes to my brother because he always wanted to get new shoes, but he never got them,” said Arguello.

The shipping company partnered with Operation Warm to donate 275 pairs, giving back to the community where employees live and work.

“It lets you know that what you’re doing is making a difference for those that appreciate it, and it can’t help but make you feel warm inside as well,” said Federal Express Ground Station Manager Roy Biswell, who joined the workers fitting the children with shoes.

The west Jackson school is in a predominately low-income area where school officials say the new shoes will be beneficial to parents and students.

“As a new principal, it makes me feel like I’m supported by my district, that they’re supporting me,” said Pecan Park Principal Dr. Jamiette Carter. “They’re buying into the vision of the school. Our vision is to educate the total child.”

The shoes weren’t the only gift. Federal Express workers also left a donation of school supplies they collected.

“When they walk in and they feel good, they do good,” added Carter. “They’re ready to work and so we’re excited about that.”

Last year, students donations of shoes and coats were made to Oak Forest and John Hopkins Elementary Schools.

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