Arizona Education Association

Fall 2015

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26 Fall 2015 | AEA Advocate WE ARE AEA! • WE ARE AEA! • WE ARE AEA! • WE ARE AEA! Following in his educator parents' footsteps, Tyler swartzendruber knew he wanted to be a teacher and coach from a young age. In his third year of teaching, swartzendruber is a special Education teacher and head coach for the Yuma High school Criminal boys basketball team and girls golf. "I take pride in motivating young athletes and encouraging them to work their hardest," says swartzendruber. "They will one day be able to take that work ethic and commitment to their future employer. Those habits will allow them be successful in any career they choose. Our basketball program emphasizes the importance of maximizing practice time and giving maximum effort at all times." The Yuma Union Education Association member encourages his students to get involved in the community to drum up support for the school and its athletics program. "Most of the students at Yuma High school come from low income Hispanic families. We rely heavily on community support to help fund our athletic programs; fund raising and corporate sponsors make it possible for us to compete." The local paper recently featured swartzendruber's basketball team for their fundraising efforts this past summer. "We come Yuma Coach Builds Community Support up with creative ways to raise money for our basketball program. There isn't money in our schools athletic budget to support the boys basketball team. Our booster club fund raises to help purchase uniforms, practice gear, basketballs, and tournament travel expenses. I roofed a house over the summer as a fund raiser for our team and two of the players on the team, Oscar sierras and Tristian Dill, were able to help with this. The players made some money and we were able to give a portion to our booster club. We are going to use that money to help purchase new uniforms for our team." Research shows when communities are invested in their neighborhood public schools, student academic achievement and graduation rates improve. schools need financial and moral support from community members and businesses and the community depends on the school to educate their children and future workforce and attract more residents and business. A strong relationship between communities and their schools benefits everyone. "Our basketball program appreciates the support from our community," says swartzendruber. "Our program would not operate to its maximum potential without their help. We are always open to new sponsors that are able to be a part of our Criminal Basketball family." n

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