The Scottsdale Charros presented Supai Middle School staff, faculty and students with $25,000 for two education grants from The Charro Foundation.

The grants, each worth $12,500, will help the middle school update its weight room equipment, which is currently donated goods, and make technology more accessible in classrooms.

“The Charros have a long history of supporting Scottsdale Unified School District, and Supai Middle School is honored to be the recipient of not one but two grants this year,” says Supai Principal Shelley Hummon. “These grants will provide a greater opportunity for our students to be engaged physically and mentally. The dollars will ensure greater access to technology in the classroom and the opportunity to improve the overall health and wellness of students by updating the weight room, which support middle school athletics and provides a safe alternative for students when temperatures rise.”

The Charros assign members as liaisons to help institutions within the Scottsdale Unified School District apply for grants. Charro Jason Klonoski worked with Principal Shelley Hummon throughout the year to secure these grants.

“When I first walked through the school’s weight room, it was as close to nothing as I had ever seen,” Klonoski says. “There were weight benches without bars and a broken treadmill.”

Students were asked to submit hand-written letters to the selection committee to share, in their own words, how the school would benefit from technology – such as computers and software – and additional physical education equipment.

“Many kids fail on tests, reports and quizzes because of lack of study,” writes one student, Angel Walsh. “If they had more interesting ways to study, such as using technology, I feel we could improve grades and behavior. I say behavior because many kids get bored in class.”

“I want any child who has the will, to get the education he or she deserves,” Klonoski adds. “It’s the great equalizer.”