Updated February 23 at 11:56am
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8/30/12 10:56AM
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Sour Grapes Trump Donuts; Complaints End Dunkin’ Donuts Fundraiser for Central Falls Charter School

CENTRAL FALLS, Rhode Island – What began as a fundraiser for the Segue Institute for Learning by three local Dunkin’ Donuts ended early and abruptly when a small number of complaints were lodged …

CENTRAL FALLS, Rhode Island – What began as a fundraiser for the Segue Institute for Learning by three local Dunkin’ Donuts ended early and abruptly when a small number of complaints were lodged against support for the school.

During the promotion which began on August 19, Dunkin’ Donuts customers paid one dollar for a coffee and donut and the money donated in entirety to Segue. The three participating locations were Dexter Street and Lonsdale Avenue in Pawtucket, and Broad Street in Central Falls.

Shortly after the fundraiser began, a woman claiming to be an employee of the Central Falls school system entered the Dunkin’ Donuts on Dexter Street, ripped down Segue signs, and loudly complained that other area schools were not part of the program. She and others subsequently called Dunkin’ Donuts corporate office and demanded an end to the fundraising efforts.

“We’re very disappointed that a fundraiser to benefit students in Central Falls evoked this type of reaction,” said Angelo Garcia, Founder/Head of School for the Segue Institute for Learning. “However, we need to continue to support our students and families and not let situations like this deter us. "What is sad is that the very people bothered by this fundraiser are working with students of this community every day. Whether it's at Segue or any other school, anything that benefits Central Falls youth should be embraced and not diminished.”

Garcia spoke to Dr. Fran Gallo, Superintendent of Central Falls Schools and Ana Cano-Morales, President of the Central Falls School Board of Trustees who both offered their support in any way possible. The fundraiser was nevertheless cancelled.

“On behalf of the Segue community, we sincerely thank Dunkin’ Donuts for the monies raised and the many community members who support our school,” said Garcia.

Tabitha Elefsiades, manager of Dunkin’ Donuts instrumental in implementing the fundraiser, expressed her deepest apologies to Segue for the early end to the program. Elefsiades shared that her stores raised almost $3,000 for Segue - the highest amount ever generated by her fundraisers.

A critical time for Segue, the school is currently in discussions to purchase the building where it is now located. A building fund has been established with a generous $10,000 donation from actress Meryl Streep. Additional contributions to this fund are now being accepted.

Segue is also up for renewal of its charter this year and the school is working closely with the Rhode Island Department of Education through this process.

About Segue Institute for Learning

Segue – ( sé gwáy ) – {intransitive verb} Definition: to make a smooth, almost imperceptible transition from one state, situation or subject to another.

Founded in 2006 and opened in 2009, Segue Institute for Learning features high academic rigor, small class sizes, individualized attention, strong board and parental involvement, and intensive community partnerships. Segue recognizes its students as "AT PROMISE" versus being considered "AT RISK". More than a school, the institution is a movement to take responsibility for education, improving quality of life and encouraging civic engagement. As a school, Segue helps students achieve academic excellence and be better prepared for high school, college, and the work force.

Follow Segue at www.facebook.com/SegueIFLand on Twitter @SegueIFL.

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