U.S. Cellular is continuing its commitment to schools with the Calling All Teachers campaign starting in August and Calling All Communities campaign returning in November.

U.S. Cellular is giving $500,000 to help teachers fund projects to enhance their students’ learning experience and another $500,000 for schools to improve their educational resources.

“We are bringing back both our Calling All Teachers and Calling All Communities campaigns this year to continue our support of teachers and students,” said Matt Kasper, director of sales for U.S. Cellular in New England, in a news release. “U.S. Cellular is committed to education and these campaigns are an example of how we invest in our communities.”

Throughout the summer, U.S. Cellular associates are encouraging teachers to organize their projects for the start of Calling All Teachers. On Aug. 1, Maine public school teachers can register online at DonorsChoose.org, affiliate as a U.S. Cellular teacher, and then post their classroom projects for potential funding. DonorsChoose.org is a philanthropic website that helps teachers find funds from corporate and individual donations for classroom projects. Last held in 2010, U.S. Cellular donated a total of $2.1 million through its Calling All Teachers campaigns funding more than 3,800 classroom projects, which included purchasing reading rugs, art supplies, lesson planning tools, and science experiments.

Starting in November, the Calling All Communities campaign will return for the fifth year. Schools can rally community support for the chance to win a share of $500,000 to fund what their students need the most. The top 20 schools that garner the most community votes will each win $25,000 to use as they wish to improve their educational experience.

Since the program began in 2008, U.S. Cellular has awarded $4 million to 56 schools across the country. Past winners of the Calling All Communities campaign have used their winnings in a variety of ways to enhance the learning experience for thousands of students. Many winning schools outfitted their classrooms with new computers, improved outdated infrastructure and renovated gymnasiums, kitchens and science labs. A few gave scholarships to graduating students while others donated some of their winnings to non-profits around the world.

With school budgets across Maine being voted on by local towns, residents are having to make difficult decisions on balancing spending increases for schools by way of property tax increases, addressing staff cuts, and paying for staff raises and other increasing costs.

“Giving back to communities is central to what we stand for,” adds Kasper. “We are proud to help schools with extra funds and help 20 public or private schools win a share of $500,000. Through our commitment to education, we help strengthen the communities we serve throughout Maine.”

For more information, visit uscellular.com.