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“I love them”: City teacher sets up GoFundMe to help students attend prom

Helping students who can't afford the prom
Buffalo school teacher sets up GoFundMe to help students attend prom
Posted at 5:01 PM, Feb 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-17 17:47:22-05

BUFFALO, NY (WKBW) — “I love them. I had a great high school experience and I want them to have the same,” declared Mary Cimato, special education teacher, senior adviser, Math, Science, Technology (MST) School in Buffalo.

Attending the prom can be costly for students. There’s the gown, tuxedo, flowers and limo. But for some city school students, they can’t afford it.

That’s why Cimato has established a GoFundMe page to help students pay for a chance to attend a memorable moment.

For so many teens attending their prom is a 'rite of passage’, especially for senior as they prepare to graduate and become a young adult.

Cimato would like to make sure her students have a chance to experience a night they’ll remember for a lifetime.

“Prom is a rite of passage. I want them to focus on school because that's why they are there, but I want them to be able to leave school proud of their accomplishments and have the best prom ever," Cimato explained.

Cimato set up the GoFundMe page to raise money so all her students will have a chance to attend.

MST students.jpg
Rosearielyz Diaz, MST senior, Mary Cimato, teacher & Myquan Greer, MST senior.

“Some kids are working to support their kids and some working to support their households and they just don’t have money for extras,” Cimato said.

“My mom, we just came from Puerto Rico, so it is difficult to pay for the house - all the stuff,” Rosearielyz Diaz, senior at MST.

This will be Diaz’s first prom in the United States and she could use some help.

“It is difficult, ‘cause — my mom can not afford a lot of things for me and my brother too,” Diaz noted.

promo Myquan 2.jpg
Myquan Grer attended his junior promo in 2019 at the MST School.

MST senior Myquan Greer says the GoFundMe page shows how much teachers care about students.

“Teachers are super hands on and they care about us a lot. They push us and they motive us and they care. She’s actually trying to get us to go to prom for free - to me that’s caring,” Greer said.

But students must show academic growth during the 5th and 10th marking period. First, they will get a free pizza lunch and a haircut or hair style. If they continue to do well academically, then it's off to the prom.

“We’re going to check their grades - if they’ve met the benchmarks for growth then they get a ticket to prom,” Cimato replied.

A night to remember thanks in part to a teacher they won’t soon forget.