He didn’t arrive in a sleigh nor was he wearing a red suit and leather boots, but EPISD Superintendent Juan E. Cabrera was playing the part of Santa on Wednesday.
Cabrera came to deliver a special gift to the students at Lee: his $750 holiday stipend from the successful Penny Swap election.
The gift will be used to buy more of the special computer coding robots students at the school have been using as part of the successful efforts to use EPISD’s Active Learning Framework in the classroom.
“I wanted to give back and thought the holiday bonus was a great way to do it,” Cabrera said. “It’s also my way to thank our employees and the community for supporting the Penny Swap.”
The $750 is a special grant presented to Lee Elementary in collaboration with the EPISD Education Foundation. All full-time EPISD employees will be receiving a $750 stipend as promised with the successful passage of the Tax Ratification Election, or Penny Swap, on Nov. 6.
Lee was selected because of its teachers’ support of EPISD Education Foundation’s Employee Giving Campaign. The campus will be using the extra funds to expand their coding program using Dash Robots.
“It is a great honor to be able to receive Mr. Cabrera’s $750 stipend,” principal Terry Montes said. “The teachers can utilize these robots to integrate the mastery of TEKS and provide an engaging atmosphere for students to learn. We appreciate the opportunity to enhance our students’ successes through this donation.”
A group of third graders, some with Dash Robots in hand, thanked the superintendent for his donation. They were all smiles as they talked to him about how the technology works and how much they enjoyed using it.
“Everybody has the chance to try the robots,” said third grader Daniel Meniola. “I think they’re going to like learning to coding them. I’m excited about getting more Dash.”
“I think it’s really cool we get more robots. They are really cool,” she said. “I like it when you program them and you have to test them to see if it works correctly.”
Lee Elementary showcased its Active Learning Framework model to leadership in EPISD and the community earlier this month.
The Dash Robots are among one of the many active learning strategies at the campus.
“I’m excited about active learning we are doing across the District and especially here at Lee Elementary,” Cabrera said. “We are really engaging kids in a different way. I’m excited to see what they’re doing with the extra money.”