I recently received a tabulation of official donations made to our school district in 2011-12.  Cash and goods combined totaled over $960,000!  Let me tell you the story of just one of these many donations:

Our Pearland ISD counselors identified 36 students and their families who were in great need of support for the Christmas holidays.   $4,000 of that amount was raised by the employees of Wal-Mart who work at the Dixie Farm location.  In order to reach that total, the employees held weekly bake sales, prepared BBQ  plates, made soups, etc. and sold those items to each other during lunch in their employee break room.   Mind you, these are typically part-time employees earning an hourly wage.  In addition, the store manager worked with our school district to apply for a $6,000 grant from the Wal-Mart Foundation – to add to the funds raised.  I understand this is the fourth year for this store and its employees to make a donation like this.  The store manager has told our people that of all the team-building activities, this one has had the most positive impact on employees.  I would add that such activities made Christmas possible for 36 families – and set an example for all to see.

Various organizations within our community — including the YMCA, Kroger, GDF Suez Energy, Chocolate Bayou Federal Credit Union, Vineyard Church, NBCEA, Luna’s Mexican Restaurant, HOPE Church, and Pet Hub Animal Rescue — collected supplies and cash to provide back-to-school backpacks to needy students last fall.

Other organizations also donated to needy families/students when the call went out.  These included Target, Macy’s, Pet Hub, Tammy Dexter, Nancy Kozanecki, Favors for Friends Charity Thrift Store, Central Church of Christ, and Academy Sports & Outdoors.

Others donated to events ranging from Astros tickets to staff development training.  Among them are  Gulf Coast Educators Federal Credit Union, the Houston Astros, H-E-B, Wells Fargo, Pearland Area Republican Women, Wal-Mart Main Street in Pearland, M.D. Anderson, Brazoria County Fair Association, Rice University, BP’s Fabric of America Fund, Casa Ole, South Park Funeral Home, Dr. Gant’s Pediatric Office, Red Robin Restaurant, Putt-Putt Funhouse, Kroger, Rotary Club of Pearland, The Legacy One Group, Spring Creek Barbeque, Keep Pearland Beautiful, Raising Cane’s Restaurant, Ryland Homes, Eric Livingston, CiCi’s Pizza, Tutoring Club, Hobby Center for the Performing Arts, Strickland Chevrolet, Chick-fil-A, Sports Clips, Dare to Excel, and Joseph’s Nursery.

There are other organizations and individuals who have donated either anonymously or through channels that didn’t necessarily get recorded in the report I received.  In any case, I want to express my appreciation, on behalf of the Pearland ISD students and staff, for your collective example of generosity and kindness.

It is our children and our entire community who are blessed!


  1. 1 Anthony Tupper September 11, 2012 at 4:42 pm

    Thank you for your quick reply, and your view on martial arts. I was a bullying victim, and that was why I got into martial arts. I understand the difficulty in identifying the true bully in a situation, which is why I encourage my students to communicate with their teachers and parents about everything. Not tattling, but reporting what they saw or were involved with. I appreciate your work with these kids. On another note, since you have become Superintendent, you have brought a second wind to this community and refreshed our desires to help PISD with the education and moral growth of the children. Keep up the great work!

  2. 2 Suzy Roberts August 4, 2012 at 8:38 am

    Your “bible” references don’t mean squat to our MANY NON-CHRISTIAN
    students and parents. Knock it off. It is offensive to others. Your religious beliefs are private and should be kept so. I should not even know what your faith is. That is called separation of church and state. Look it up.

    • 3 Barb Mills September 9, 2012 at 9:28 pm

      It’s a shame that Dr. Kelly’s Bible references don’t mean anything to you. If we could put prayer back in our schools, I’d guarantee that you would see more good than bad things going on at our schools. I totally disagree with you on this issue.

      Keep the references coming, Dr. Kelly! It’s refreshing!

    • 4 Anthony Tupper September 11, 2012 at 11:35 am

      If you are the same Suzy Roberts that served on the school board, I can see now why you were not re-elected. Your intolerance is embarrassing to our community, even if you are defending the non-Christians. The man is not putting church and state together, but simply using literary references, as one would with Shakespeare or Emerson. As a PISD/PHS graduate, I am embarrassed to say that you were on our school board…and you were a proponent for a new Superintendent. Now you don’t like the one we have. No one wins with you, do they? I do believe in seperation of church and state, but to go so far as to criticize a school district superintendent’s blog (which is not mandated in schools), is too extreme. No one has to read this if they choose not to do so. I am tired of people saying that Christians are intolerant, when those same people are just as intolerant of Christians.

      • 5 Teacher September 12, 2012 at 10:11 pm

        I am not a Christian (I am agnostic), but I still find Suzy Roberts’ comments revolting and felt compelled to comment. While I might prefer to see limited references to the Bible or prayer in speeches, articles, etc., I can also appreciate the fact that my religious beliefs are in the minority in Pearland. I am surrounded by people that value their Faith, and I don’t have an issue with that, even if I don’t agree with their views. Dr. Kelly has inspired an entire community and the staff of Pearland ISD, and I don’t care if he quotes from the Bible or any other work of literature to make his points. I respect him more for the fact that he says what he wants, even if people like Ms. Roberts disagree. He is confident and truly has the students’ best interests at heart. As a teacher in Pearland, I can see the positive impact he has made since he began his job as Superintendent. If he continues to do amazing things for this district, he can say whatever he wants about God and the Bible. I’m not going to hold another person’s religion against them or show them any disrespect for voicing their opinions…especially if it does not affect the way they do their job.

  3. 6 Barbara Smith July 21, 2012 at 10:27 am

    Are you going to strengthen Pearland school districts policies against bullying? It is getting out of control.

    • 7 Dr. John P. Kelly August 30, 2012 at 3:56 pm

      Yes Mrs. Smith, we are strengthening Pearland’s policies against bullying. The state has issued new laws; our policy service has issued new requirements this summer – and our Principals (and others) are now being trained further on anti-bullying requirements. I hope the general public also understands that bullying is often claimed by both sides in an argument/situation; that such activity is often deliberately committed out of sight of school officials – and that getting to the truth is challenging. Society as a whole should continue to remember that the primary people resonsible for bullying – are the bullies – and not those attempting to stop it. We will endeavor to do our best…

      • 8 Anthony Tupper September 11, 2012 at 11:44 am

        Dr. Kelly – I am a local martial arts/self-defense instructor who works with many students that attend Pearland ISD schools. I am also a 2005 PHS graduate. I have seen that the bullying problem is growing, but it is not just a Pearland issue, it is nationwide. We will never be able to stop it, but if local schools instill zero-tolerance, TRUE zero-tolerance for bullying…it can be minimized. Also, if we instill confidence in the victims through programs designed to help them, they can have the knowledge and courage to be able to report bullying to the proper authorities (teachers, assistant principals, counselors, etc.) I encourage all of my martial arts students to talk about bullying issues with their parents so that they may be informed and be able to relay their concerns with their child’s school. Remember, most bullies act this way because they are not confident in themselves or insecure about their own life. If we try to help the bullies learn how to properly handle their insecurities and confidence issues, that can be a way to minimize the situation as well. I’m not saying don’t punish them for what they do to other children. They still need to learn that what they did to them is wrong. But, if we help children on both ends, then we can minimize the issue even faster. Just my two cents…

      • 9 Dr. John P. Kelly September 11, 2012 at 12:49 pm

        Mr. Tupper: I appreciate and agree with your views on bullying. Zero tolerance is something I hope we achieve – but with the limitations I’ve previously described (i.e. having to determine who truly is the bully and who is the victim – and ensuring that we aren’t condemning an innocent party). What your comments bring to the table, and are of especially high value to me – is your willingness to teach these things in additional settings outside of school. The most noble martial arts approach is to defend AGAINST the bully – and to teach that using one’s physical strength or verbal/written communication in a harmful way is shameful. I appreciate your efforts!

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