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Michelle Obama and Ellen Degeneres Gift $100k And More To D.C. Elementary School

Michelle Obama and Ellen Degeneres Gift $100k And More To D.C. Elementary School

It is truly the most wonderful time of the year!

Forever First Lady Michelle Obama partnered with Ellen DeGeneres to surprise a Washington, DC elementary school with $100,000, WUSA9 reports. 

The gift was a part of “Ellen’s Greatest Night of Giveaways,” a holiday initiative started by DeGeneres to “deliver life-changing gifts to unsuspecting, everyday people,” with the hopes of spreading holiday cheer. 

Obama visited Randle Highlands to deliver them a special gift. The elementary school is located in Southeast, D.C. and the entire student population is considered economically disadvantaged. Nearly 65% of the students are either homeless or in foster care. Many of the teachers at the school come out of their own pockets to support students, paying for school supplies, using school laundry machines to wash clothes, sending students home with dinner, etc. 

Kristie Edwards, Principal of Randle Highlands, spoke about the school’s population and plight. “We actually sit on the hill in Southeast D.C. It’s considered one of the roughest areas in D.C. My teachers really do go above and beyond. We’ve seen teachers take families to the grocery store and buy groceries for the families. Everything is about how we can make things better for our students,” Edwards said. 

Despite the circumstances, Edwards and her staff make sure that school is a safe place for the students and somewhere they feel welcomed. The school recently began a cooking club where students learn to prepare meals for their families and get the option to take home produce from the school’s garden. “When our students come in here they expect to get love, a hug and to ensure that they’re in a safe space,” said Edwards. 

Ellen and the Forever First Lady took notice of how attentive staff are to the students at Randle Highlands and made up their mind that they were going to reward them for it. DeGeneres spoke to students and asked them to share their favorite things about the teachers at Randle Highlands. “My favorite thing about my teachers is that they all take time to have fun and learning at the same time,” one student said. “I like my teachers because they never give up on me,” another student added. 

DeGeneres donated $100,000 to the school, a brand new basketball court, new computers and laptops for teachers and iPads for every student. Obama delivered the news to the students in person. “Ellen is giving you guys $100,000 to help you cover whatever expenses that you have for the school, whether it’s the food pantry, or whether it’s computer programs, we hope that this will make sure that you won’t have to go into your pockets any longer for these kids,” Obama told teachers as emotions ran high. 

“When you are in a building where the children show you so much love and you show it back to them, that makes me want to be better every single day. If nothing else, my legacy will be that they knew that they were loved by me,” Principal Edwards said. 

Obama took to social media to share her excitement about the surprise. “I had so much fun putting a smile on all of these little faces from Randle Highlands Elementary School in Washington, D.C. Thanks to the @TheEllenShow for letting me be a part of #EllensGreatestNight!,” she said. 

You can check out the big surprise below!

Congratulations to all the staff, faulty and students at Randle Highlands Elementary. May your holiday season be that much brighter!

Photo Courtesy of @MichelleObama/Instagram