American Legion earbuds

Representatives of the city’s elementary schools receive donations of earbuds from American Legion Post 43. From left are American Legion Auxiliary Unit 43 First Vice President Nancy Fuller, member Teresa VonWert, President Roxy Hoots, American Legion Post 43 Commander Gen. Alan Harris, Robert E. Lee Elementary School teacher Jennifer Bean, Bel-Aire Elementary School teacher Niki Tuten, Jack T. Farrar Elementary School counselor Anne Black and East Lincoln Elementary School counselor Sharon Nelius.

Elementary school students who lost their earbuds at school will be able to get a spare thanks to a donation from the American Legion Auxiliary.

Members of the American Legion Auxiliary Unit 43 presented a donation of several hundred pairs of earbuds to representatives of the four Tullahoma elementary schools at the American Legion Post 43 at 109 NW Atlantic St.

Post 43 Commander Alan Harris said the idea came from the auxiliary and was presented to Post at the monthly American Legion meeting by auxiliary member Teresa VonWert. Harris said the Post members wanted to chip in and do their part as well.

“I think there’s about 400 earbuds that’s going to be distributed to our elementary schools,” Harris said to the schools representatives. “We are very proud of that and we hope you guys can use them to your benefit. We’re happy to do this and look forward to seeing bigger and better things out of our school system this year.”

VonWert said she got the idea from an article in the auxiliary monthly magazine about donating either locally or nationally. She reached out to Robert E. Lee Elementary School teacher Jennifer Bean and asked what they needed or could use. Bean told her she personally bought headphones for her classroom, and VonWert thought that would be a good idea, especially with the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I thought that would be a good thing to get for them,” VonWert said. “That way it would help them and also help the kids so that way it won’t costing them as much, as well as parents.”

Each of the elementary school representatives thanked the Auxiliary and the Post for the donation of the earbuds, saying it would help their students.

Jack T. Farrar Elementary School Counselor Anne Black said the extra earbuds will help their students be able to focus and concentrate on their work, as the kids have their own devices.

“I really, really appreciate this; it was great idea,” Black said.

Bel-Aire Elementary School teacher Niki Tuten added that the earbuds are beneficial for her classroom, as her students do a lot of AR reading, a program that helps children work on their reading level. As students have their own Chromebooks, the earbuds will help them be less distracted without them.

“On behalf of Bel-Aire, I would like to say thank you from all the teachers, students and parents for helping us out,” Tuten said.

Bean said her students tend to lose their own sets of earbuds by the end of the school year. While they will have them at the beginning of the year, most students will return from fall, Christmas or spring break without them. While the teachers do contact the parents about it, Bean said it puts a strain on teachers’ resources. She added that having extra pairs of earbuds for their students will definitely help both students and parents.

“Thank you to the Legion and the auxiliary, we truly appreciate it.” Bean said.

Harris also told the representatives that the donation was not a one-time donation and strongly encouraged the schools to reach out to the legion for other needs, as they still want to contribute and support the schools.