The Prince George’s County Public School System is expecting thousands of families on Saturday to attend its annual Back to School fair at the Showplace Arena, an opportunity for students to register for classes, purchase uniforms and even get required immunizations.
More than 7,000 families attended the fair last year. And Natifia Mullings, a spokesman for the school system, said the school district, which has added immunizations to the event offerings, is anticipating an even larger crowd this year.
“The back-to-school fair has become such a highly anticipated event for PGCPS families,” said Daryl Williams, the chief of the Division of Student Services. “It’s a one-stop shop for everything a parent needs to ensure that their child has a great start to the school year.”
One of the biggest draws during the annual event is the backpack giveaway. Mullings said 4,000 backpacks will be given away during the fair.
Students are given a ticket when they attend the fair. They must show proof that they stopped by a school display, an office display and a vendor display to redeem the ticket for the free backpack. Backpacks are given while supplies last.
And for the first time, the Health Services for the school system will provide free chicken pox vaccines to kindergarteners and free meningococcal and Tdap (Tetanus, diptheria, pertussis/whooping cough) vaccines to students entering seventh grade. Parents can pre-register their children for the vaccines, but walk-ins will be accepted.
“Our overall hope is that students and parents come away from the fair prepared and truly excited about the school year,” Williams said.
The fair will be held from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.