ARLINGTON, Texas – Bright young minds and the teachers who inspire them in underserved neighborhoods across North Texas will receive a lift, thanks to $225,000 in support from the Cotton Bowl Foundation. At today’s Goodyear Big Play Luncheon, the Foundation announced grants to Mission Arlington, St. Philip’s School and Community Center, Communities In Schools Dallas Region, Education Opens Doors, Teaching Trust, and Urban Teachers. The announcement of the grants took place today at the annual Goodyear Big Play Luncheon.
The Cotton Bowl Foundation’s mission is to serve the communities associated with the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic by supporting programs that improve opportunities for underserved youth. The Foundation’s vision, channeled through the great sport of football, is to make an impact on those who play the game, attend the game and support the game.
“The Cotton Bowl Foundation strongly believes that we should participate in our communities in the spirit of the grand tradition of the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic to help make an impact on the children and educators of our community 365 days a year,” said Carl Ice, Cotton Bowl Foundation Chairman.
The Cotton Bowl Foundation awarded a $25,000 grant to Mission Arlington that will enhance the after-school programming for more than 2,000 students by creating a centralized Youth Event Center in downtown Arlington.
Mission Arlington’s mission is to meet the people of Arlington’s physical, emotional, spiritual, and educational needs by providing a comprehensive array of services that include Bible studies, after-school tutoring, food assistance, clothing, furniture, medical/dental care, counseling, and sports leagues.
“We are blessed to have a facility that would gather our youth in one location to better facilitate training and mentoring and growth,” said Tillie Burgin, Executive Director of Mission Arlington.
Afterschool program activities include after-school services, sports leagues, Bible studies, monthly gym nights, and training and educational opportunities.
St. Philip’s School and Community Center, one of the premier youth educational institutions in South Dallas, received a $25,000 grant that will support their STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) summer program. The 6-8 week full-day program, which will serve 150-170 children ages 2-12, includes academic instruction, hands-on activities, field trips, 1:1 tutoring, and enrichment classes.
“St. Philip’s School and Community Center looks forward to providing an incredibly comprehensive and engaging summer program to 150+ South Dallas and southern sector children through this generous grant from the Cotton Bowl Foundation,” Benaye Rogers, Chief Philanthropy Officer of St. Philip’s School and Community Center said. “We are excited about our shared impact!”
A third gift of $25,000 was awarded to Communities In Schools Dallas Region (CISDR) to support the expansion of the SafetyNet Project, which provides teachers with training to better support children experiencing a behavioral health crisis.
CISDR’s mission is “to surround students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve life.” Training 2,000 adults in the Mental Health First Aid for Youth (MHFA) will better prepare teachers to address behavioral health issues in order to prevent campus-based violence and ensure needs are adequately supported.
“In the last three school years, we have seen a 17% increase in students with mental/behavioral health issues, ranging from self-harm to suicide attempts,” said Dr. Judith Allen, President & CEO of CISDR. “Thanks in part to the Cotton Bowl Foundation, we can train teachers, parents and other adults in community how to ‘see something, say something’ when a child is at-risk of harming themselves or others.”
Education Opens Doors received a $50,000 grant to support its primary program Roadmap to Success, which aims to provide middle school students and teachers with a college access roadmap to increase college-going knowledge and students’ self expectations. The program aims to provide 10,000 students with 900 additional minutes of active planning and career preparation discussion that are otherwise not provided by teachers or counselors during the 2018-19 school year.
“Thanks to the Cotton Bowl Foundation grant, we will be able to invest in further development of our teacher training and support resources,” Jayda Batchelder, Education Opens Doors Founding Executive Director said. “This investment will enable us to scale the Roadmap to Success program, equipping hundreds more students with critical college and career knowledge.”
A grant in the amount of $50,000 was awarded to Teaching Trust, a Dallas-based educational leadership development organization, to support its three core programs: Aspiring Leaders, Leadership Teams, and Community of Educators. Teaching Trust targets principals and teachers in Title I schools across North Texas where 84 percent of students served are economically disadvantaged. This grant is matched by an additional $50,000 from the College Football Playoff Foundation, which supports the teaching profession via its Extra Yard for Teachers platform.
Teaching Trust works to eliminate the opportunity gap for low-income students through a focus on strong school leadership by providing targeted training, coaching, and support for current educators working in the region’s highest need schools.
“We are so grateful for the Cotton Bowl Foundation’s generous support of Teaching Trust’s work to build the leadership capacity of school leaders and educators across North Texas,” Patrick Haugh, Teaching Trust Chief Executive Officer said. “With the Foundation’s gift, more educators will be equipped with the skills and practices needed to close the opportunity gap and transform academic and life outcomes for their students.”
The final $50,000 was awarded to the Dallas/Fort Worth chapter of Urban Teachers. The Cotton Bowl Foundation’s gift will support the organization’s mission of preparing effective, culturally competent teachers who significantly accelerate student learning and remain teaching in the nation’s highest-need schools. Along with Teaching Trust, the College Football Playoff Foundation awards a matching grant of $50,000 that will contribute to the ongoing support of the comprehensive four-year teacher residency program.
The program focuses on helping recent college graduates with a state-of-the-art teaching practices that includes a two-year residency filled with rigorous coursework and 1,500 clinical hours of teaching in urban settings before receiving a Master of Science in Education degree with specializations in special education and English language learning. Teachers then receive two additional years of ongoing coaching and evaluation to ensure their success.
“We are honored to partner with the Cotton Bowl Foundation in the critical work of supporting Dallas teachers,” says Peter Shulman, CEO of Urban Teachers. “We know that effective teachers are the most important influence on children’s learning, and it is inspiring to see the Cotton Bowl Foundation and Dallas community rally around the Urban Teachers program to prepare outstanding career teachers for Dallas schools.”