School district holds free one-stop shop for everything back-to-school

"To be able to give back and put smiles on the kid's faces ... we think that's real important."

Justin Udo
August 16, 2018 - 3:59 pm
Barbers offered free haircuts for kids during the event.

Justin Udo | KYW Newsradio

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — The School District of Philadelphia hosted its 10th annual back to school celebration to help kids and families get ready to head back to the classroom.

During Thursday's event at the School of the Future in West Philadelphia, officials gave away more than 8,000 backpacks and school supplies.

"It really is rewarding for us as a school district," said Lee Whack, spokesman with the school district. "This is why we do this — for our young people."

Whack said the festival is a one-stop shop for all things back-to-school.

"Whether it's back-to-school clothes, backpacks, getting all those immunizations, dental or eye exams — that's a lot to juggle for a parent, so here's a one-stop shopping where you can get all of that kind of stuff done, and it's free," he noted. They also gave out food to promote the district's free breakfast program that runs throughout the school year.

Michael Murrille with Utopia beauty salon brought some of his barbers to the event to give the kids free haircuts, too.

"To be able to give back and put smiles on the kid's faces and get them ready for school, we think that's real important," he said.

Meg Berlin with the League of Women Voters used the event as an opportunity to get other attendees registered to vote, which she said is an extension of the formal education process.

"We're giving them information about voting, why it's important to vote, and where to vote," she added.

More than 100 vendors came out as well to tell families about different educational programs and opportunities.