The CLASS Education Foundation hosted its second annual fundraiser on Friday at the Takeda Science Center, on the College of the Canyons Canyon Country Campus, to celebrate the Sulphur Springs Union School District staff, firefighters, deputies and other community service members.
They also hosted a silent auction to support enrichment programs for students and awarded 14 Sulphur Springs district teachers with grants. Altogether the amount awarded was a total of $6,562.
The foundation supports all nine schools in the Sulphur Springs district. It helps fund opportunities in which students are exposed to their three main pillars: creativity, innovation and wellness. The organization’s mission is to help students develop valuable skills they can carry with them into college, careers and active civic participation.
“All the funds raised today go right back into those three pillars,” said CLASS Foundation President Richard Lacy.
The enrichment programs the group helps fund include music and art, additional grants to Sulphur Springs teachers, and wellness classes like yoga and garden projects.
Ken Newton, a Sulphur Springs Community School teacher, was one of the 14 educators who was awarded a grant. He hopes to use the funds to develop a podcasting and movie-making program where students are exposed to new technology and have the creative freedom to develop anything they put their minds to.
Newton said he’s very excited to help make a difference in the students’ lives and help them see the potential possibilities as they can learn something new at a young age that will influence their career pathway when the time comes.
When teaching at other schools, Newton developed similar programs with the mission of helping students learn to navigate their future and potential careers. Because of the programs he developed in the past, some of his former students are now working at NBC Miami and with the San Diego Padres.
“Allowing them at this level to be creative. Allowing them to discover a love of learning and really kind of doing things outside the box,” Newton said. “You never know what is (in) their future.”
“We’re really appreciative of (those who) think about giving back to our students and think about the class Education Foundation and their commitment to what they do for students,” said Catherine Kawaguchi, superintendent of the Sulphur Springs Union School District.