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Staples To Provide Free School Supplies To Teachers Across The Country; Over $7.5 Million Awarded To Educators and Schools Over The Past Year

Wednesday, July 30, 2003 7:00 am EDT

Dateline:

FRAMINGHAM, Mass.

Public Company Information:

NASDAQ:
SPLS
"These are challenging times for educators in this country"

FRAMINGHAM, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--To honor teachers across the country for their hard work, Staples is offering free tote bags filled with school supplies during Teacher Appreciation Days in August. Every Staples store will host this celebration of teachers on one of three Saturdays in August -- the 2nd, 16th or 23rd. All teachers with valid teacher identification are invited to take advantage of the free gift. Dates and details are available at Staples stores and www.staples.com/teacherday.

Recent state budget cutbacks have put increased pressure on school districts to minimize expenses for items such as school supplies. On average, teachers spend approximately $500 of their own money each year on classroom supplies to create the learning environment they prefer. The Teacher Appreciation Days gift bag is stocked with pencils, pens, sticky notes, a pencil box, stickers, paper clips and numerous other giveaways.

"These are challenging times for educators in this country," said Shira Goodman, executive vice president of marketing at Staples. "Teacher Appreciation Days at Staples gives us an opportunity each year to say thank you and make back-to-school time a bit easier for teachers."

Staples recognizes that teachers' supply expenses extend beyond just the back-to-school season. In addition to the supplies, Staples supports education throughout the year with unique teacher discount programs, grants through Staples Foundation for Learning, the "Staples Coach of the Week" sweepstakes providing $5,000 in supplies to 17 schools each year, and campaigns such as "Staples Recycle for Education." In total, Staples awarded over $7.5 million in donations and supplies to educators and schools over the past year.

To provide year-round support, Staples offers teachers a program called "Teacher Rewards." Elementary and secondary teachers receive $10 Staples merchandise reward certificates each time they accumulate $100 in product purchases made at any Staples store, Staples.com or catalog. Teachers can enroll in the Teacher Rewards program by filling out an enrollment form in-store or calling the Teacher Rewards Hotline at 1-888-636-9555. Participants receive a free Teacher Rewards card to be used in the store whenever they make purchases.

Goodman explained that by supporting education and the people who make it possible, Staples is investing in the future of its communities. Staples recently extended its support of education through "Staples Recycle for Education," a new program to raise millions of dollars for educators by recycling used inkjet and laser toner cartridges. Staples will donate $1.00 for every eligible cartridge recycled in its stores through October 31 -- with a goal to raise $5 million for public education.

About Staples, Inc.

Staples, Inc., an $11.6 billion retailer headquartered outside of Boston, sells a wide range of office products, including supplies, technology, furniture, and business services. Staples is committed to make buying office products easy. Nearly 58,000 associates serve consumers and businesses of all sizes -- from home-based businesses to Fortune 500 companies in the US, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. Staples invented the office superstore concept and today, with approximately 1,500 office superstores, is the largest operator of office superstores in the world. Staples also serves its customers through its mail order catalog, e-commerce and contract businesses. More information is available at http://www.staples.com.

Editor's Notes: Teacher Appreciation Days will be held as follows...

AL 8/2, AR 8/16, AZ 8/2, CA 8/16&23, CO 8/16, CT 8/16, DC 8/23, DE 8/16, FL 8/2, GA 8/2, IA 8/16, ID 8/16, IL 8/16, IN 8/2&16, KS 8/16, KY 8/2&16, MA 8/16&23, MD 8/16&23, ME 8/16, MI 8/16, MN 8/23, MO 8/16, MS 8/2, MT 8/16, NC 8/2, ND 8/16, NE 8/16, NH 8/16&23, NJ 8/23, NM 8/2, NV 8/16, NY 8/23, OH 8/16, OK 8/16&23, OR 8/23, PA 8/16&23, RI 8/16, SC 8/2, TN 8/2, TX 8/16, UT 8/16, VA 8/16&23, VT 8/16, WA 8/16&23, WI 8/23, WV 8/16

If two dates are listed, contact your local store or look online to determine date for your market area.

Contact:

Staples, Inc.
Karen O'Neil, 508-253-7375
karen.oneil@staples.com
or
Sharyn Frankel, 508-253-7895
sharyn.frankel@staples.com

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