Partners with Purpose
CISD, Goodwill partner to train special ed students at on-campus store
Posted on 03/27/2024
This is the image for the news article titled CISD, Goodwill partner to train special ed students at on-campus store  Starting next fall, thrift shoppers will be able to buy vintage clothes and wares from a new on-campus Goodwill Store that will be staffed by enterprising Canutillo ISD special-education students who will be getting life-changing job skills.

The Board of Trustees on Tuesday approved a partnership between the Canutillo Independent School District and Goodwill Industries of El Paso to open the Employee Development Service (EDS) Goodwill Store at Canutillo High School at the start of the 2024-25 school year.

The on-campus store will offer vintage and gently used clothing, housewares and other merchandise at a discounted price just like any traditional Goodwill location. However, the employees at the store will come from the special-education classes at Canutillo High who have been selected to receive training designed to help them transition to life after graduation.

“We are extremely happy to be able to partner with Canutillo ISD to provide this tremendous opportunity for the students in the District,” said Melinda Jordan, President and CEO of Goodwill Industries of El Paso. “The EDS Program has a proven record of showing that what our special students can do is extraordinary.”

Under the agreement, a classroom at Canutillo High would be turned into the EDS Goodwill store. The student workers will then staff the store and receive training such as customer service, telephone skills, workplace safety, cash register operation and production skills.

Elvia Moreno, Canutillo ISD’s Director of Special Education, said the partnership adds another layer to the range of services the District offers special students who are getting ready to graduate.

“Programs like the EDS Goodwill store guarantee that our students get the training, skills and confidence they need to be successful in life,” Moreno said. “It’s amazing to see the personal growth that comes with having our students know they can achieve anything they set their mind to.”