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El Paso ISD teachers surprised, recognized by Tony the Tiger, Sun Bowl Association

(EL PASO INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT – Sept. 21, 2022) – A pair of El Paso Independent School District teachers were paid a surprise visit Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2022, by Superintendent Diana Sayavedra, Tony the Tiger and representatives of the Sun Bowl Association as part of the College Football Playoff Foundation’s Extra Yard for Teachers campaign.

Amy Martinez Perez, a dual language teacher at Don Haskins PK-8 School who was named the district’s Elementary Teacher of the Year; and Andreana Harkless, a physical education teacher at MacArthur PK-8 School who coaches volleyball, track, basketball and softball, and is the district’s Secondary Teacher of the Year; were surprised at their respective campuses by the mascot of the Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes brand and namesake of the annual Tony the Tiger Sun Bowl.

Each teacher received a commemorative football, a T-shirt, and a gift certificate for school supplies. They will also be recognized during the annual college football postseason bowl game that pits schools from the Pac-12 Conference and the Atlantic Coast Conference against each other. This year’s game will take place Friday, Dec. 30, in Sun Bowl Stadium.

amy martinez perez

Tony the Tiger drew cheers from students as he made his way through the halls of both campuses en route to meeting the teachers. At Don Haskins PK-8, Martinez Perez expressed elated shock as she was presented with her award materials by Sun Bowl Association President Bernie Olivas.

“I’m extremely honored to be recognized,” she said. “Being a teacher is such a rewarding profession. It gives me so much joy to see students grasp concepts and enhance their learning. The fact that I get to do this every day is incredible. Being honored for it is a big bonus.”

andreana harkless

At MacArthur, Harkless was visited by the Sun Bowl entourage in the school’s cafeteria during lunchtime to the delight of students enjoying their meals. Harkless, who is widely known as “Coach Shuga,” danced with Tony the Tiger and was met with hugs by school administrators, teachers and students after the presentation of her awards.

“I absolutely love what I do,” Harkless said. “I love to instill into others and make them see what they are capable of. My next goal is to be an administrator. I want to show other teachers that they can do it, too.”

Story by Pablo Villa
Photos by Leonel Monroy, Jr.