ABC’s ‘Abbott Elementary’ and Scholastic bringing free book fairs to two L.A. schools

Two teachers standing in a room surrounded by children seated on the floor.
Actors Tyler James Williams and Quinta Brunson star in ABC’s “Abbott Elementary.”
(Raymond Liu / ABC)

ABC, the home of freshman comedy “Abbott Elementary,” has partnered with publishing company Scholastic to provide underfunded schools with free book fairs, coupling the successful show’s marketing campaign with a very worthy cause.

Building on the momentum of Quinta Brunson’s workplace comedy, which is set in a low-income Philadelphia school and shot mockumentary-style, the network announced Thursday that it would host book fairs at seven Title 1 schools between March 14-18.

Each student will be given two free books, and each teacher will be given 10, ABC confirmed to The Times.


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Harrity Elementary in Philadelphia, the school that Brunson went to and based her show on, is among those selected for the fairs.

Locally, the book fairs will hit Cortada Elementary and Florence Griffith Joyner Elementary in Los Angeles. Other participating schools include Diehl Elementary in Erie, Pa.; Bond Elementary in Chicago; Dayton’s Bluff Elementary in St. Paul, Minn.; and Freeman Elementary in Flint, Mich.

Brunson, who created and stars in the series as well-meaning, second-grade teacher Janine Teagues, celebrated the partnership on Twitter and said, “Ultimately, I believe public schools should be better funded/supplied. However, in the meantime, Abbott (the tv show and people behind it) are really excited about doing things like this.”

“‘Abbott Elementary’ shines light on and reflects the experiences and challenges faced by our country’s educators,” Erin Weir, executive vice president of marketing for ABC & General Entertainment, told Variety, which first announced the partnership.

Weir said they felt a “responsibility to amplify that mission” in the sitcom’s marketing efforts and have been working to celebrate teachers through supply donations and grassroots activations.


Added Billy DiMichele, senior vice president of creative development at Scholastic: “Our mission at Scholastic has always been to support teachers and provide them with the resources and materials needed to build warm, positive classroom experiences for their students. That’s why we are so thrilled to team up with ABC and ‘Abbott Elementary’ — a show dedicated to uplifting educators and reflecting their experiences — to put books into the classrooms that need them most and get kids excited about reading and learning.”

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In January, the network also hosted a Traveling Teacher’s Lounge bus tour that traveled from Philadelphia and made its way to New York, New Jersey and Maryland. It provided teachers with classroom supplies, bagels, coffee and “Abbott Elementary” swag — via a bus branded with the show’s logo.

The tour acquired donations along the way, including 1,000 books, 10,000 notebooks and 100,000 pens, pencils and other writing tools, as well as thousands of arts and crafts materials, ABC confirmed.

The second wave of the tour launched Thursday in Dallas and makes its way to L.A. on March 22, when “Abbott Elementary” returns with new episodes. Stops include Houston, Santa Fe, N.M., Phoenix and Reno, Nev.