School in Chesterton has been recognized by the Indiana Department of
Education as a school of Promising Practice in the area of School Closet.
School’s Promising Practice is one of 200 education or wrap-around service
programs to be recognized by the Department in honor of Indiana’s
advocates for each student and has partnered with a non-for-profit
organization called Lotus Reach. This partnership allows Liberty to provide
a ‘school closet’ that is available to all of its students.
“The school’s goal
is to help children not only feel good in their clothes, but more
importantly in their own skin,” said Kristin Bonez, school counselor.
“Having the proper clothing for school has improved our students’
self-esteem and confidence while allowing them to feel like they fit in. In
turn, having the students’ feel good about themselves makes them eager to
come to school to learn.”
A letter is sent
home to each child in the building asking them to explain their need, if
any, sizes and hobbies of the student. The form is returned to the school
counselor in an envelope.
The Lotus Reach
team sorts the clothing by gender and works together to get bags of clothing
to the student’s home. The school also accepts donations of new and gently
used clothing from families and staff in the school to keep the closet
"Our teachers and
staff go above and beyond expectations," said Bonez. "We work as a team to
teach leadership in all."
programs, like Liberty Elementary’s are student-centered and focus on
positively impacting students through innovative programming and activities
that provide a high-quality learning environment and experience.
Elementary’s School Closet Promising Practice will be shared with educators
across the state of Indiana as an example of best practices that are having
a positive impact on Hoosier students.
information about the Promising Practices initiative can be found on the
www.doe.in.gov/outreach/promising-practices, or visit