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Lowe's makes big donation of grout to local school system

It sounded too good to be true, but it turned out to be true after all.

The McDuffie County School system recently received an unusually large gift - several tons, to be exact.

Jim Franklin, the assistant superintendent for administrative services, said he received a phone call from Lowe's saying they would like to donate several tons of grout to the school system if they could use it. Dr. Franklin had only two words to describe his thoughts during the phone call.

"Santa Claus," he said. "It's like Christmas from Santa Claus."

When Dr. Franklin hears of a donation of that enormity, he said he has to question the quality of the material. All concerns were laid aside when Dr. Franklin found out that Lowe's was stocking the material for donations to Habitat for Humanity, but the organization didn't have enough storage space to handle it.

"When I heard the caliber of the group who it was meant for, then I knew it was good," he said.

Lowe's delivered the grout to the school system's old bus barn where it will be safe from the weather. The Assistant Superintendent said the shelf life will be several years, and he hasn't tallied the exact amount of the donation. The grout is in both paste and powder forms and is packaged in bags and plastic containers.

Not only will the grout be used in building maintenance projects, but in the classroom as well. Dr. Franklin said it can be used by the high school art teachers and vocational students, as well as in the younger grades for craft projects. The grout is colorless, so it can be changed to fit the need.

"The sky is the limit in terms of how we can use it," Dr. Franklin said.

The school board decided during their June board meeting to send a letter to Lowe's, thanking them for the donation.

Web posted on Thursday, June 28, 2007

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