According to recent research, over the last ten years the cost of school supplies and fees for elementary school students has increased by 88 percent. Since families are spending more money on school materials, many times they can’t purchase everything on teachers’ wish lists, and teachers end up buying classroom supplies out of their own pockets. To help alleviate the burden on teachers and kick off the new school year right, Waltonwood Cotswold senior living community is excited to host a supply drive for Billingsville Elementary school. Billingsville Elementary has a long history of serving the children of Grier Heights and the surrounding community. The public is encouraged to drop off supplies at Waltonwood Cotswold (5215 Randolph Road in Charlotte) now through the second week of August. The school is requesting the following items: yellow highlighters, dry erase markers, Clorox Wipes, Band-Aid’s, paper towels, Sharpies, hand sanitizer, plastic spoons and Ziploc bags (quart and gallon size). Residents and team members will deliver the items to the school on August 17. 

“I am thrilled that Waltonwood Cotswold reached out to us and offered to host a supply drive,” said Dianne Burke, new teacher mentor at Billingsville Elementary School. “It was such a nice surprise, and everyone is thankful for the generosity of the residents, families and team members. The cost of school supplies adds up quickly, so every donation will really make a difference.”

Studies show that most teachers pay out of pocket for supplies. Most spend nearly $500 a year, and one in 10 spends $1,000 or more according to the Education Market Association. Waltonwood Cotswold decided to organize the public drive to help teachers get through the start of the year and hopefully save them some money. This partnership with Billingsville Elementary is one of many examples of how the senior living community always seeks ways to have a positive impact on the Charlotte community.

“The goal of this supply drive is to have a positive impact on Billingsville’s students and their overall learning experience,” said Leah Nash, executive director of Waltonwood Cotswold. “We hope the public will support our effort so that we’ll be able to give children and teachers what they need for a successful start to the school year. We are excited about this newly formed partnership with Billingsville Elementary, and our residents are already looking forward to presenting donated items to the school next month.”

For members of the public who have questions about the school supply drive, please contact Kensey Rash at or 704-496-9310.

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