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Hank Poore Foundation donates books to MLK Jr. Elementary
Mallory Cook

The Hank Poore Foundation is donating books about disabilities to all libraries in the Tuscaloosa City Schools.


On Wednesday, the first donation was made to Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary, including about a dozen children's books. Hank Poore, a Northridge High School graduate with cerebral palsy who is founder of the nonprofit, was also on hand to present the books. The donation will provide easily accessible resources for all TCS students that promote understanding and inclusion, helping to foster connection between disabled and non-disabled students.


“Our donation of books about disability to every TCS school library will not only educate non-disabled students about different disabilities and inclusion of the disability community, but it will provide an opportunity for students with disabilities to read about people like them,” said Ashley Ferry, executive director of the foundation. “Making these books available in TCS libraries will open the doors of possibility and inspiration to all TCS students.”


Dr. LaTonya Williams-Collins, principal of Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary school, said she appreciated the donation because it is important that students with special needs be able to see themselves in library books, but also for other students to learn more about people with disabilities. 


"It is a great opportunity for our students in general education to learn about others, and learn about things others go through," Williams-Collins said. "Just because they have disabilities or differences, doesn't mean they are someone for our students to be afraid of. I think these books will bring a lot more knowledge and acceptance to our students." 


The Hank Poore Foundation exists to provide opportunities and experiences for people with disabilities, and disability education is one way it fulfills this mission. The organization will donate about 250 books to the TCS libraries, and then hopes to donate books in the Tuscaloosa County School System and other regional school districts. 


“The Hank Poore Foundation considers education about disability and inclusion one of our priorities,” said Executive Director Ashley Ferry. “Adults and children alike often make assumptions when they see someone in a wheelchair or a person who uses a speech device. Knowledge is a way to break down those assumptions and stereotypes about our neighbors with disabilities.”


Alyssa Witherspoon "Inspires Excellence"
Mallory Cook

Alyssa Witherspoon received the "Inspiring Excellence Award," an award given to one student from each TCS school for demonstrating good character and leadership.

Alyssa is a quiet leader who leads by example. Her Principal says she displays integrity and stays focused on learning. She enjoys drawing and painting.

CAPS Tuscaloosa and the Tuscaloosa Police Department presented Alyssa with gifts along with her award. 

STEM Night
Mallory Cook

Students and parents enjoyed MLK Jr. Elementary's 3rd annual STEM night! 


Girl Power Week
Mallory Cook

MLK students enjoyed celebrating Girl Power Week! 

Black History Month Celebration
Mallory Cook

MLK students celebrated Black History Month at the Black History Program featuring songs, poems, quotes and biographics.