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LeBron James urges Akron voters to support school levy

By admin Published: November 5, 2011

LeBron James recorded a robo­call that went out to 30,000 Akron voters Tuesday.

Those who answered heard the NBA superstar urge them to support the city’s school levy.

“Hello, this is LeBron James asking you to support Issue 14 for Akron’s Public Schools. The strength of our community and the Akron Public Schools were a blessing in my life.

“Without Issue 14, our schools are facing massive cuts and a future seriously threatened. Our kids are the foundation of Akron. They deserve the best schools, the best educational opportunities.

“Please remember to vote for Issue 14 next Tuesday, November 8th. Education matters to me and Akron’s future.”

The campaign to pass the 5.5-mill property tax targeted voters who hadn’t yet been contacted, voters still on the fence and voters who had previously expressed support for the levy, said district spokeswoman Leah Nemeth.

“LeBron and the LeBron James Family Foundation have been active partners with APS for a while now, giving so much time and resources to our students,” Nemeth said. “By means of this partnership, the campaign reached out to LeBron’s team seeking their support and endorsement of Issue 14, and LeBron volunteered to do a phone recording.”

It’s not the first assist for the schools from the Akron native, who may have some time on his hands because of the NBA lockout that has delayed the season opening.

Last fall, the LeBron James Family Foundation gave Akron Public Schools 1,000 computers for students to use both during classes and in the district’s after-school programs.

And this past summer, James replaced his annual King for Kids Bikeathon with Wheels for Education, a program that focuses more on academics. Under the new initiative, 360 third-graders received a bicycle, a new laptop computer and a backpack stuffed with school supplies and participated in a two-week educational camp.

John Higgins can be reached at 330-996-3792 or jhiggins@thebeaconjournal.com. Read the education blog at http://education.ohio.com/.

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