Elementary school is a carefree time for many children. It is also the time of life when children are learning to read, write, do math, interact with each other and make friendships, all building blocks that will shape the rest of their education to come and the rest of their lives.

This is why Paulina Baclawska ‘19, a double major in accounting and economics at the Charles F. Dolan School of Business, was inspired to raise money for the children at Cesar Batalla Elementary School in Bridgeport, Conn. as part of her Dolan School of Business Year of Service fundraiser. Baclawska was inspired by Lauren Hart ’19, who volunteers at Cesar Batalla School in her education classes.

Baclawska learned that many children at Cesar Batalla do not have resources such as books to practice their reading or notebooks and folders to organize important assignments.

“I was shocked at the lack of funds that were available to these teachers,” Baclawska said. “I had some of my best childhood memories in elementary school and it made me so sad to know that these young students may not have the same experience because of monetary issues.”

“You can imagine how much teachers need to withdraw from their own paychecks in order to make ends meet within their own classrooms and to provide a conducive learning environment for their students,” Baclawska continued, “I wanted to see if there was anything the Fairfield community could do to help out these teachers and students.”

On DonorsChoose.com, where teachers set up donation pages for their classrooms, Ms. M Ostroff, a pre-Kindergarten teacher at César Batalla, is hoping to fund a science exploration station for her three-and-four-year-old students so they can develop their math and science skills through interactive play.

Sixth-grade language arts and social studies Cesar Batalla teacher Mrs. C Ramos wrote about how much even small donations matter to her students. “My students take pride in their work. Many of my students don’t come from the best neighborhoods in town, but they try their best at school,” Ramos said.

“Many of them have experienced trauma in their lives and have difficulty coming to school,” Ramos continued, “Our classes serve students with a range of disabilities, including intellectual disabilities, emotional disturbance, autism spectrum disorder and specific learning disabilities. Your contribution is helping their future.”

Thanks to Baclawska and her Dolan School of Business fundraiser, co-sponsored by Beta Sigma Gamma, the business honor society, and Alpha Sigma Nu, the Jesuit Honor Society, it is possible to help the children of Cesar Batalla. From Feb. 4-15, there will be fundraiser tables at Einstein Bros Bagels and at the information desk in the John A. Barone Campus Center.

There will also be a collection table at the lobby in the Dolan School of Business, and a collection box at the Dolan School of Business Dean’s Suite. Students can also donate directly to specific teachers’ classrooms at Cesar Batalla through DonorsChoose.com.  


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