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Free Pencils for State Test

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) -- A program is offering free pencils to Iowa teachers that distribute materials to students for the state's annual assessment test.
   State Treasurer Michael L. Fitzgerald says the pencils are available through Prepare for the Basics. The program gave more than 19,000 pencils to Iowa schools last year.
   Teachers must register online for the program, which has limited supplies.
   Fitzgerald says in a news release that the program is a small token of appreciation to hardworking teachers.
   Along with pencils, students will receive information about a state-sponsored college savings program designed to help families prepare for the costs of higher education.

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