IEI Establishes Food Pantry for SENSE Charter School
INDIANAPOLIS - Mayor Greg Ballard joined the staff and students of Southeast Neighborhood School of Excellence (SENSE) in a ribbon-cutting ceremony to open the school's new food pantry, funded by local businessman Michael Sutton. SENSE, attended by students in kindergarten through grade six, operates primarily as a neighborhood school in Fountain Square, and more than 89 percent of the school's 313 students participate in the free- and reduced- lunch program.
"I applaud community-minded business leaders such as Michael Sutton who step forward to provide resources so that schools can address students' basic needs," Mayor Ballard said. "All children deserve access to healthy food, and this new food pantry will do that in addition to providing a new way for SENSE staff to connect with families."
Sutton, president of Infrastructure Engineering Inc., recognized a need of students and their families and made a large financial contribution to establish the food pantry that offers nutritional food choices.
"No child should go to school hungry, and I want to do anything we can to provide wholesome meals to enhance the learning process so students can focus on their education," Sutton said. "We want to support a community that supports us."
Through this contribution, which enabled the school to build and open the food pantry, SENSE created a partnership with Gleaners Food Bank, joining two other schools in Marion County with food pantries that work with Gleaners. Families of the school's students will have access to the food pantry twice a month and must follow guidelines set by the school.
About the Southeast Neighborhood School of Excellence
Southeast Neighborhood School of Excellence (SENSE) is a community-driven and neighborhood-based elementary school that nurtures academic excellence, social development and civic responsibility in every individual. In its seventh year of operation as a Mayor-sponsored charter school, SENSE builds a strong foundation for learning and living by creating in its students a thirst for knowledge and an enthusiasm for learning. SENSE operates under the philosophy that the elementary school years shape the rest of their students' academic lives and that by supporting each child socially, emotionally, and academically, the students become lifelong learners. Through a rigorous curriculum based on the Indiana Academic and Core Curricular Standards, SENSE aims to inspire a love of learning in their students, believing that their children will be future leaders who will fully engage in, and positively impact, their local community and beyond.