10 Chandler teachers get their wishes, $2,500K

(Special to the Arizonan)

Ten Chandler teachers are among the 400 recipients of $2,500 each as part of the Palo Verde Fiesta Bowl Charities’ annual Wishes for Teachers program.

The program is part of the Fiesta Bowl Organization’s annual tradition of “honoring, supporting and celebrating educators throughout Arizona,” organizers said.

Presented by Salt River Project, the overall batch of awards means that “nearly 212,000 students across 321 schools and 95 districts will be positively impacted by their teachers’ wishes with this year’s group” which collectively represents “more than 5,300 years of experience in the classroom,” they said.

Recipients included people teaching the arts to science, both gifted and special education, and languages and life skills amongst a diverse group of subjects.

“The 400 wishes granted will benefit teachers who will aim to enrich the lives of their students through technology improvements, addition of educational programs and fitness equipment and much more,” organizers said.

Randal Norton, Fiesta Bowl board chair, added, “ “Teachers are truly selfless individuals who help shape the futures of our students here in Arizona and we are proud to play a part in supporting our teachers to do more in the classroom for the leaders of tomorrow.”

Kory Raftery, manager of external affairs at Palo Verde, added that he is “excited and humbled to be part of such an incredible program that invests in teachers who are inspiring tomorrow’s leaders both inside and outside of the classroom.”

“One of our principles at Palo Verde is putting people first and Wishes for Teachers allows us to partner with an organization that supports some of the most important people in our communities.”

Created in 2016, the Fiesta Bowl Wishes for Teachers program grants classroom wishes to Arizona teachers. Public and charter school K-12 teachers across the state are invited to apply each fall with the recipients verified and selected by a random drawing.

This year’s $1 million total donation brings the Wishes for Teachers’ seven-year cumulative grant total to $5.7 million awarded to 1,600 teachers, impacting more than 700,000 students across Arizona.

“Providing teachers with the tools and resources they need benefits Arizona’s children. Partnering with the Fiesta Bowl on the Wishes for Teachers campaign is one of the many ways SRP supports teachers,” said Andrea Moreno, program manager of SRP Community Stewardship.

“Our future workforce relies on the support that we provide to educators and non-profit organizations today.”

Here are the Chandler teachers and qwhat they will sue their money to buy:

Kayla Edwards, a Spanish and AVID teacher at Paragon Science Academy, lap desks and flexible seating for their classroom.

Sara Evans, a technology teacher at Fulton Elementary School, robotic and coding equipment for their classroom.

Bonnie Flores, a math teacher at Bogle Junior High School, new VEX Robotics equipment for their students.

Cheryl Garland, a reading intervention teacher at Paragon Science Academy, flexible seating for their students.

Cecilia Loera, a Spanish teacher at Chandler Traditional Academy, will create a “Reading Corner” with Spanish books and flexible seating.

John Mahnke, a physical education teacher at Bright Beginnings Elementary School, new equipment for their physical education class.

Alisha Nischan, a physical education, wellness and nutrition teacher at Mesa Virtual Campus, new fitness equipment for students to be able to use at home for their online classes.

Elizabeth Peco, a kindergarten to sixth-grade teacher at Sirrine Elementary, flexible seating for their students.

Miranda Saenz, a technology and STEM teacher at Shumway Leadership Academy, STEM resources for their classroom.

Meghann Sarnicki, a literacy teacher at Frye Elementary School, a Zenimal device for each classroom at their school.

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