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How to Get FREE School Supplies in Charlotte NC!

How to Get FREE School Supplies in Charlotte NC!

Looking for free school supplies and back to school clothes in Charlotte, NC? We’re happy to help. I did some searches for this information and this is what I found.


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First of all, parents of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools students need to know that CMS officials have stated that the supply lists are recommendations, not requirements.  Don’t take our word for it! Here’s a statement from the Charlotte Observer:

CMS officials say supply lists are recommendations, not requirements. Kids aren’t penalized for falling short, and plenty of groups donate school supplies.


“If they don’t have it, it’s OK,” says Grier Principal Theresa Townsend. “Don’t stress over it. What’s important is getting them to school.”

…“I actually encourage parents to wait until the first few days of school to buy supplies,” says Kimberly Muhich, who taught at Oakdale Elementary. New teachers hired during the summer may want to revise the list put together in May or June, she said, and parents can find out what kind of free supplies are available at school.


“When in doubt,” Muhich said, “always buy pencils, a bottle of hand sanitizer and a few boxes of tissues and then wait until Day One.”

If you are looking for free or cheap school supplies or back to school clothes in Charlotte, NC, you’ve come to the right place!

FREE School Supplies in Charlotte NC

Camino Community Center hosts an annual Go Back to School event every July. This event provides free school supplies, backpacks, and physical exams to Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools students. On average, over 1,000 backpacks!

Students and their  families will receive dental screenings, oral health information, drug and alcohol prevention and healthy lifestyles. The event claims to be the “largest health event for children in the Charlotte area.”

Derita Athletic Association is also hosting a Back to School Backpack Giveaway Event. This event features free food, bouncy houses, water balloons, a live DJ and other fun activities. Students can receive free school supplies, haircuts, personal hygiene kits, backpacks and more. In 2017, over 1,500 backpacks will be distributed on Saturday, August 19 between 12pm and 4pm.

Molina Healthcare Back-to-School Bash hosts an annual Back-to-School Bash. The 2017 event was held at Tri-County Pediatrics, where 200 drawstring bags of supplies were given away.

Festival of McCrorey is a three-day community celebration that features an outdoor movie, back-to-school giveaways, free hair cuts and more. The 2017 event will be hosted at the McCrorey YMCA on August 25-27.


You may be able to find even MORE back to school events at!

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FREE  (and Cheap) School Clothes in Charlotte NC

Berean Seventh Day Adventist Church Schools & Community Center hosts a food pantry, clothing closet, some prescription assistance and emergency bill assistance. You may also be able to receive assistance with toys and children’s baskets at Christmastime!

Crisis Assistance Ministry provides free clothing, shoes and outerwear of all sizes for men, women and children.

Jackson Park Ministries hosts a food pantry and Children’s Clothing Closet. Free gently used children’s clothing is available for anyone under age 18. You can obtain clothing here once every 60 days.

Junior League of Charlotte WearHouse provides low-cost clothing for people of all ages. All items are in good condition and sold at very affordable prices.

Salvation Army Central Avenue Family Store provides low-cost clothing, furniture and household goods. The store is located at 1011 Central Ave in Charlotte.


Agencies that Help Students

A Child’s Place is an agency that provides supportive services to students. Qualifying students can receive free daily/weekly snack bags, medical/dental/vision referrals and new clothing or uniforms from this organization.

Communities in Schools of Charlotte-Mecklenburg provides supportive services to Pre-K to 12th Grade students throughout 43 CMS school sites. Among other services, they provide reading buddies, tutors, career coaching, SAT preparation and referrals to other agencies. They may also be able to assist with school supplies or referral to a helpful agency.

Classroom Central Free Store proves free school supplies for teachers and other school personnel throughout the academic year. If you can’t afford school supplies, your teacher may be able to obtain the equivalent supplies for free from this resource.

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