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Detroit Enterprise Academy Teachers Receive Back-to-School Shopping Spree from Marvin Jones Jr. and JCPenney

On Sept. 3, Detroit Lions Wide Receiver Marvin Jones Jr. surprised 25 deserving teachers from Detroit Enterprise Academy (DEA) with a shopping spree at the Fairlane Town Center JCPenney store to kick off the first day back to school.

Each teacher received a $200 JCPenney gift card to purchase essentials for the upcoming school year. Additionally, each school received a donation of $1,000 worth of socks and underwear for kids in need. Based on a study conducted by JCPenney, one-third of American parents worry about their child having enough socks and underwear for the school year, with the percentage jumping to 40% for those in low-income households.

“Our teachers work hard and believe in our students,” said Emily Gagnon, principal at Detroit Enterprise Academy. “They ensure our DEA scholars are receiving a quality education daily. For their hard work and efforts, they deserved this award.”

Jones Jr. believes that teachers have played an important role in his life in terms of education and shaping his character and that a lot of their hard work often goes unseen.

“I want to let them know that they’re awesome and they’re the true rock stars,” said Jones Jr. “To come here and see that is definitely heartfelt.”

Several teachers were guessing that it was a shopping spree but had no idea that Marvin Jones Jr. would be there. DEA staff was thrilled to interact with him.

Watch FOX 2 Detroit tell the story.

About Detroit Enterprise Academy
Detroit Enterprise Academy is a tuition-free, public charter school in Byron Center, Michigan, serving students in Young 5s through eighth grade. It is part of the National Heritage Academies network, which includes more than 100 tuition-free, public charter schools serving more than 65,000 students in kindergarten through 12th grade across nine states. For more information, visit

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