CHICAGO – Sagus International announced today that it has partnered with the national NBC Network on its new show, “School Pride,” from Horizon Alternative Television, which premiered October 15 and airs Fridays at 8/7 c.

Sagus International, a Chicago-based innovative school furniture supplier, donated $250,000 worth of new furniture and school supplies to support “School Pride” makeovers of schools in Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Detroit, Michigan; and Needles and Los Angeles, California.

“When we heard about NBC’s ‘School Pride,’ we felt compelled to volunteer our support because their goals dovetail so closely with our ongoing efforts to create model 21st century learning environments across the nation,” said Sagus International CEO Darryl Rosser. “It’s been incredibly rewarding to support the NBC team as they work with local school communities to improve these schools. We can only hope that our partnership with ‘School Pride’ will inspire other companies to support schools in their communities, too.”

“School Pride” is a proactive, alternative series that tells the stories of communities coming together to renovate their aging and broken public schools. While transforming the school, the community also restores its sense of value and school pride. The cameras follow students, teachers, parents and community members as they roll up their sleeves and rebuild their own schools, concluding with the unveiling of a brand-new, completely transformed school.

“What we've learned from ‘School Pride’ is that communities really can do this on their own, with the support of a passionate community and generous local businesses,” said executive producer Denise Cramsey. “As long as corporations like Sagus are willing to answer the call and provide the resources, schools can find ways to fix their problems.”

Sagus donated a variety of student desks and chairs; teacher desks and chairs; activity tables; computer tables; cafeteria tables; dry erase boards; and bulletin boards to four of the “School Pride” schools: Lanier Elementary School in Baton Rouge; Communication and Media Arts School in Detroit; Needles High School in Needles, California; and Hollenbeck Middle School in Los Angeles. Beyond the donated materials, members of the Sagus team – including its Temple, Texas-based division Artco-Bell, its Chicago-based division Midwest Folding Products, and its dealers Indeco and Culver Newlin – supplied critical support and labor for the donations.

Sagus’s partnership with “School Pride” continues the company’s commitment to improving educational results by transforming learning environments nationwide. These latest donations mark the third major philanthropic project by Sagus International in just the last two years.

The company’s pilot philanthropic program in 2008 to remake two Chicago classrooms into 21st century learning environments earned praise from now-Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. Sagus was awarded the 2009 Outstanding Partnership Award from the Chicago Public Schools in recognition of its generosity and support of that city’s school system.

Then, in 2009, Sagus received international recognition for its makeover of J.V. Martin Junior High School, the rundown Dillon, South Carolina, school that became a national symbol of what’s wrong in America’s schools. Sagus’s Darryl Rosser was inspired to make this $250,000 donation after hearing the story of J.V. Martin 8th grader Ty’Sheoma Bethea, who had captivated the nation with her passionate plea to President Barack Obama to improve the condition of her 113-year old school. Sagus was the first company to respond to Ty’Sheoma’s plea, replacing all of J.V. Martin’s aged classroom and cafeteria furniture with top-of-the-line, environmentally-friendly Sagus furniture.

Just a few months later, Sagus co-hosted the 21st Century Educational Campus Symposium in Columbia, South Carolina, and the company remains committed to supporting efforts to rebuild J.V. Martin. In recognition of his efforts in South Carolina, Sagus CEO Darryl Rosser was named a “Palmetto Ambassador for Education” this year by that state’s school superintendent.

For more than 40 years, the Sagus group of companies has supplied furniture for elementary and secondary schools across the United States. Two years ago, the company’s leaders challenged themselves to focus on a mission that goes beyond simply selling furniture. By engaging directly with educators, Sagus learned more about the challenges facing today’s schools. Sagus is committed to developing model 21st century schools. By improving learning environments, Sagus is boosting student learning and achievement. The company has also continued to enhance its products to be more flexible, affordable and environmentally friendly.

About Sagus International, Inc.

Sagus International, Inc. is an innovative company based in Chicago that is committed to enhancing physical environments to improve the results of the organizations and people in the markets it serves. By committing all of the company’s resources to understanding the changing needs of the educational, commercial and healthcare markets, and by collaborating with partners, users, architects, designers, and thought leaders in these markets, Sagus International is transforming spaces into results-oriented environments. Sagus is especially committed to developing model 21st century schools. By improving learning environments, Sagus is boosting student learning and achievement. Its pilot program to remake two Chicago classrooms has earned praise from Secretary of Education Arne Duncan (formally Chicago Public Schools CEO), and its dramatic transformation of J.V. Martin Junior High School in South Carolina earned the company widespread acclaim.

SOURCE: Sagus International Inc.

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