NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) – A community resource fair was held on Wednesday at James Hillhouse High School in New Haven to provide supplies for students with disabilities.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, school systems fought an uphill battle with a shortage of teachers and paraeducators.

More than 40 local vendors and organizations were on hand with school supplies including the Shubert Theatre and the New Haven Police Athletic League.

“We try to create opportunities and options for kids. So, our community, our families have something to do at no cost. And it’s just a chance to see us out of uniform in a different light. Just feel comfortable around us,” New Haven Police Sgt. Ron Ferrance said.

The school system has a resource fair for special education teachers and related services to give teachers the necessary tools but also to honor and value their hard work.

“Today we’re hoping to get our families and caregivers in for our students with disabilities to let them know we’re here to support them. There’s a lot of community agencies. Different resources that  families can take home with them,” said Brittany Ducran of the New Haven Student Services Department.