Katy Perry and Staples Help “Make Roar Happen”

By Erin Epstein

Global pop star Katy Perry, center, with local teachers and students, left to right, Todd Simon, Gabriela Ramirez, Prescilla Rodriguez, and Sarah Fuller pose backstage at the Staples Center during Perry's Prismatic World Tour performance on Friday, Sept. 19, 2014, in Los Angeles.

Global pop star Katy Perry, center, with local teachers and students, left to right, Todd Simon, Gabriela Ramirez, Prescilla Rodriguez, and Sarah Fuller pose backstage at the Staples Center during Perry’s Prismatic World Tour performance on Friday, Sept. 19, 2014, in Los Angeles.

Katy Perry and Staples joined forces to show their support for teachers and education across North America by launching the “Make Roar Happen” initiative. Approximately 350 music teachers in the Los Angeles Unified School District received $1,000 DonorsChoose.org gift cards courtesy of Staples, so they can create their own custom music lesson plans.

At her concert on Sept. 19, Perry honored L.A. teachers backstage. Two of the honorees, Sarah Fuller from Belvedere High School and Todd Simon from Puc Community Charter Early College High School, are planning to use the donation to better the musical program and experience for students in their classrooms.

“Our music program is large and growing in popularity with students, but has been hindered by a lack of equipment and access to logistical support,” says Fuller. “An influx of instruments like ukuleles will allow me to introduce the instrument to my more advanced guitar players. They will be excited to add a different sound to our modern band classes.”

Simon’s school is using the donation to “improve our rehearsals and performance experience with a proper playback/monitoring system so students can hear each other much more clearly,” he says. This is an important addition because “music provides fun opportunities for students to have a creative outlet while synthesizing problem-solving, critical thinking and math skills,” Simon says.

The “Make Roar Happen” initiative has allowed Katy Perry and Staples to support education, students, and teachers throughout the back-to-school season. “Music provides students with a positive, creative way to express themselves and has the potential to motivate them to excel in all academic pursuits,” Fuller says. “Students learn how to work with others and experience an environment that allows them to develop self-discipline.”

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