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Team SISD honors WIN Academy teachers with gala

Win Gala Award attendees Attendee viewing award Attendee accepting award
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Some 80 teachers in the Socorro Independent School District WIN Academy were celebrated with a gala event at the end of the 2017-2018 school year.

The educators, along with their principals, were congratulated and thanked by Superintendent José Espinoza, Ed.D., Assistant Superintendent Alisa Zapata-Farmer and the rest of the district’s leadership team.

“These teachers are dedicated and passionate about what they are doing,” Zapata-Farmer said. “Every one of them has high expectations. Failure is not an option. They are ready to go at 7:30 a.m., after school and on Saturdays. They give a lot of themselves to these students. It is a recipe for success.”

The WIN Academy is an award-winning SISD program designed to help vulnerable children succeed in school and close achievement gaps among students across the district. It was established in in the 2015-2016 school year and encourages students to Work hard, have an “I can do it” attitude, and Never give up.

Nineteen Team SISD campuses offer the nationally-recognized program. Some 1,300 students were enrolled last year and received more learning time via nine-hour school days Monday through Saturday with a double dose of reading and math. WIN Academy students also receive extra resources to learn, including a personal digital device and digital curriculum, and more personalized learning with a teacher who loops with them for multiple years.

“The numbers show the WIN Academy has been very successful,” Zapata-Farmer said. “School attendance continues to go up because students are eager to go to school. They are engaged and love what they are doing. They are learning relationship skills, technology and critical thinking.”

Elizabeth Garcia, who teaches fourth grade in the WIN Academy at Escontrias Elementary School, is on her second year with the program. She came to SISD from the Canutillo Independent School District, specifically for the WIN Academy.

“It caught my attention because it really puts into practice what I went to school for,” Garcia said. “I have seen my students grow tremendously and academically in their everyday lives. They know how to communicate with other students and have confidence in themselves. They have a desire to learn and see themselves going to college.”

Garcia likes that Team SISD helps all students succeed whether learning is easy or a struggle.

“All the tools are given to us to ensure we are successful,” Garcia said. “I want to thank Dr. Espinoza and his cabinet and (Escontrias Elementary principal) Mr. Aguirre. Without them, the program would not be successful. WIN is a positive, motivational way to look at education.”

Published July 16, 2018
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