Academy donates 30 bikes to Hopkins Magnet Academy
Dec. 14, 2010 at 6:14 a.m.
Pricilla Aguirre bashfully held fast to her purple bike, as did 29 other boys and girls at Hopkins Magnet Academy, Tuesday morning.
Academy Sports and Outdoors donated 30 bikes to motivate students who are doing well in school and promote outdoor activity.
The 7-year-old first-grader had her only bike stolen over the summer, so getting a new one in her favorite color was an early Christmas surprise for her and her mother.
"I wouldn't have been able to get it for her," said Michelle Bustos, her mother. "I'm happy the school chose for her to get one."
The bike donation has become a tradition, said Kevin Patek, store manager.
"We want to encourage kids to do well in school and to get involved in the outdoors," he said. "That's why we do it."
The store has donated the bikes to the magnet school in the past, but last year, it donated to the Boys and Girls Club.
The store added four more bikes this year, Patek added.
Sulema Salinas, who has been principal at the school for three years, said it always warms her heart to see the kids receive their bikes.
The school picks children who are good role models, have good grades and are good representatives of the school.
"It's very, very rewarding," she said. "We'll have children that will come up and tell us this is the very first time they've received a gift such as a bike."
The school has quite a few low socioeconomic students and this donation is a great way to make the holidays easier and reward the student and parents for their hard work in motivating education, she said.
At Hopkins, 94 percent of the kids are economically disadvantaged, said Diane Boyett, communications specialist with the Victoria school district.
"We do have several children receiving bikes today that are in that predicament," Salinas said.
Bustos now has one more gift to add under the Christmas tree.
"We're going to wait for Christmas," she said as her daughter hugged her tightly.