May 14, 2018 Celebrations

Donors help purchase caps and gowns for students in need

Graduation is one of the most memorable moments of a person’s life and Superintendent Dr Paul Gausman, his wife Suzi and the William Johnson Trust are helping to make sure all Sioux City graduating seniors get to walk across the stage together no matter what financial background they come from.

In just a few short weeks, nearly one thousand Sioux City Community Schools Seniors will be getting their diplomas.

Along with these students, nearly 100 others from across the district are getting help from donors to be able to afford their caps and gowns.

“We want that ceremony to be equal. We want everyone going across that stage to be able to go and celebrate,” says Dr Paul Gausman

The Sioux City Public Schools Foundation says in recent years there has been a growing need for donations to help students who can’t afford their caps and gowns.

“The cap and gown sets are only about 50 dollars a piece but, for some families that are more than they can really manage. In the Sioux City Community School District we have an ever increasing poverty need,” says Kari Kellen, Executive Director with the Sioux City Public Schools Foundation.

Students say it’s important for them to be able to walk across the stage with every single one of their classmates, no matter what their financial background is.

“We should all be included because we all worked hard for this. We’ve all spent most of our lives in school, like, we’re all educated,” says North High School Senior Kelece Taylor, a North High School Student.

And, Superintendent Dr Paul Gausman says it’s important to him that all graduating seniors get to celebrate their accomplishments.

“We’ve got about 70% of our students in poverty, 20% of our students don’t speak English as their home language, and we’ve got about 40 different languages spoken and we want that opportunity for them to come across that stage, to be apart of that party where we celebrate the great work that they’ve done,” says Dr. Gausman.

Doctor Gausman along with his wife, Suzi and the William Johnson Trust will foot the bill for the caps and gowns for the students in need.

View the full story from KTIV
by Ashly Richardson