EPIC Honored by Government of Mexico for Support of Hispanic, Mexican Students
Published: February 24th, 2021
OKLAHOMA CITY – EPIC Charter Schools has been honored by the Government of Mexico for its support of Hispanic and Mexican students.
In a public ceremony February 10, the state’s largest public school system received a donation of Spanish-language books to be used at its Heritage Academy, a bilingual pre-K through 12 program launched by EPIC Charter Schools in 2020 in Oklahoma City.
The collection of books was presented in person by Mexican Consul General Rodolfo Quilantan, who traveled to Oklahoma City for the event. He said the Mexican government, through its Ministry of Education and Ministry of Foreign Affairs, established the book donation program to support dual-language education and encourage activities focused on students of Mexican descent in the United States.
“The purpose of these Spanish books is so that the American teachers and the parents of the students can work together in order to make the most of the transition from Spanish to English and of course to increase the values of the Mexican culture and Hispanic culture here in Oklahoma,” Quilantan said.
Robert Ruiz, president of Scissortail Community Development Corporation, worked with Hispanic parents in Oklahoma City to spearhead Heritage Academy, which is serving 160 students in its first year. He said the event was important because it not only shined a light on Heritage but also on the great need for such public programs.
“Supporting Spanish-speaking students isn’t just about language. It’s about culture,” he said. “That’s why it’s important that the Heritage Academy emphasizes culturally relevant curriculum and art programs, including Latino Studies, Mariachi and Baile Folklorico”
EPIC Co-Founder Ben Harris thanked Ruiz for partnering with EPIC on the creation of Heritage Academy. He also thanked Quilantan for the generous donation.
“We’re excited about our outreach to Mexican-American families and we hope to build on it in the future. We are very honored to serve the community,” he said.
The ceremony was streamed live via EPIC’s Facebook page and can be viewed by cutting and pasting this link: https://www.facebook.com/watch/live/?v=139581804587065&ref=watch_permalink
Note: EPIC is the largest public school system in Oklahoma, serving nearly 60,000 students statewide in the 2020-2021 school year and employing more than 2,000 educators and administrators throughout the state.