Socorro ISD awarded $800,000 W.K. Kellogg Foundation Grant for WIN Academy

The Socorro Independent School District has been awarded a prestigious W.K. Kellogg Foundation grant to support its innovative WIN Academy, which creates conditions that propel vulnerable children to achieve success – a mission shared by the Kellogg Foundation.

The grant for $800,000, which runs through September 2019, will assist Team SISD to meet its goal of closing the achievement gap by increasing the capacity of teachers and the implementation of a personalized learning platform.

The WIN Academy is a one-of-a-kind program that was implemented through the vision and leadership of SISD Superintendent Dr. José Espinoza last school year.

Dr. Espinoza used his firsthand experience as a vulnerable child to develop an education system that helps all children to overcome obstacles and reach their full potential now and in the future. As he researched best practices for improving student academic outcomes, he found that Jaime Escalante’s legendary teaching approach featured in the 1988 film Stand and Deliver mirrored his own educational philosophy, high expectations, and vision of excellence.

SISD awarded 800000 WK Kellogg Foundation3“As the superintendent of Socorro Independent School District, my goal is to follow Escalante’s footsteps by putting a non-traditional education system in place that provides our students with the support and resources they need to thrive emotionally and academically,” said Dr. Espinoza. “We are grateful and honored to receive the Kellogg Foundation grant that will further support our relentless efforts to ensure every student in Team SISD succeeds.”

The program started at 10 schools in SISD during the 2015-2016 school year and was expanded this school year to six more schools. Team SISD already has seen success in WIN Academy student performance, attendance, and confidence.

The WIN Academy ensures SISD students who struggle in a traditional education setting receive more learning time via nine-hour school days on Monday through Thursday with a double dose of reading and math, more resources including a digital device and digital curriculum, and more personalized learning with a teacher who loops with them for multiple years. WIN teachers, students, and parents have pledged to Work hard, have an “I can do it” attitude, and Never give up.

SISD leaders also have been invited to present and share WIN Academy best practices at state and national conferences. As educators become aware of this unique program, they are interested in learning more about its strategies, goals, and success.

“The reality is the one-size-fits-all traditional public education system does not meet the needs of all our students,” said Dr. Espinoza. “With the support of the W. K. Kellogg Foundation and our entire community, I strongly believe our WIN Academy has the potential to significantly impact education reform not just in SISD but also nationwide.”

To learn more about the WIN Academy, visit

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), founded in 1930 as an independent, private foundation by breakfast cereal pioneer, Will Keith Kellogg, is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the United States.

Guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive, WKKF works with communities to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life.

The Kellogg Foundation is based in Battle Creek, Michigan, and works throughout the United States and internationally, as well as with sovereign tribes. Special emphasis is paid to priority places where there are high concentrations of poverty and where children face significant barriers to success.

WKKF priority places in the U.S. are in Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico and New Orleans; and internationally, are in Mexico and Haiti. For more information, visit