PCPS Hosts Annual Kiddie Christmas Event for Children in Need

PCPS Hosts Annual Kiddie Christmas Event for Children in Need

News
A group photo of students at Bethune Academy's Kiddie Christmas event

Christmas always comes early at Polk County Public Schools!

Every year, employees from PCPS’ Information Systems and Technology (IST) division organize Kiddie Christmas, a decades-old tradition that benefits children in need. This morning, we gathered at Bethune Academy to deliver gifts to a happy bunch of Head Start students.

Each child received a toy from their wish list, as well as clothing items, a board game and groceries for a holiday meal to enjoy with their family. Santa Claus made a special appearance and spent time with the students as they opened their presents.

Photo of a child at Bethune Academy's Kiddie Christmas event

Our IST staff hold fundraisers throughout the year to provide gifts for Kiddie Christmas; this year, they raised more than $4,300 from PCPS employees. Staff from our Support Services department fill stockings for the children. Corporate sponsors also contribute to the event — a special thanks to Boswell and Dunlap, Ernie Morris Enterprises, Publix and Ready Communications.

Thursday’s celebration at Bethune Academy was a welcome return to normalcy. Last year, Kiddie Christmas was held in a drive-through format due to COVID-19.

“This year has just been amazing to see the children’s faces, and be able to help their families and know that they’re going to have a good holiday,” said Dr. Tina Barrios, PCPS’ assistant superintendent of the IST division.

Bethune Academy Principal Robin Hewitt said the event brought a lot of joy to the school’s Head Start families.

“Today was truly a day of celebrating students, and the holiday spirit of giving,” she said.

Photo of a child at Bethune Academy's Kiddie Christmas event

Photo of a child at Bethune Academy's Kiddie Christmas event

Photo of a child at Bethune Academy's Kiddie Christmas event