Sunday, Aug. 21, 2011 | 1:55 a.m.
When Chaparral High’s football coach put out the word that the program needed help, it was alumni like Casey Kupisch who answered the call.
Kupisch, a former center and linebacker for Chaparral, drove five hours from Phoenix to attend an event Saturday to raise money for helmets, pads, weight room equipment and other gear that some schools might take for granted.
“It’s a good thing that we can give back to where we came from,” said Kupisch, who graduated in 1990. “I can’t speak for anyone else, but my friendships and bonds were created by playing football.”
“I still talk to people I played football with today,” he said. “It’s good to have that experience, and it’s good to be able to contribute to help someone else have that experience.”
Kupisch was among some 100 former Chaparral High alumni, friends and family who attended the fundraiser at Murphy’s Law Pub and Grill, 1590 E. Flamingo Road.
Michelle Huskins, president of the Chaparral HS Alumni Foundation, began organizing the event three weeks ago after she received a call from first-year coach Bill Froman asking for help.
The event brought in more than $3,700.
State Sen. Mark Manendo, a 1985 graduate who played soccer at Chaparral, said he hopes to see the Cowboys football program return to its glory days of the 1980s and early 1990s.
“Chaparral might not be the Chaparral that you remember,” said Manendo, one of the founding members of the alumni association. “So we need to try to bring it back to those standards and those resources that we had.”
Froman, meanwhile, said he was “totally blown away with the amount of alumni that have come out of the woodwork to help...Anyone in this economy that’s taken a minute out of his or her day to swing by and spend a buck to help somebody else out is a pretty good thing.”
Jeff Urbanski, general manager of Murphy’s Law and a 1991 Chaparral graduate, said he was happy to serve as a host for the fundraiser.
“We’re just doing our part for the community to try to give back and help out as best we can,” he said.
Donations can still be mailed to the association at: Chaparral HS Alumni Foundation, 4840 E. Powell Ave., Las Vegas, NV 89121. Checks should be made payable to Chaparral High School with football fundraiser in the memo section. A receipt will be mailed back.
For more information, contact Huskins at 702-454-5892.
Chaparral High School has seen better days.
Once among the top performing schools in the Clark County School District, Chaparral High is undergoing changes to counter dismal test scores and the lowest graduation rate in the district.
The campus located near East Flamingo Road and U.S. 95 is one of five turnaround schools not meeting the expectations outlined in No Child Left Behind.
Chaparral is now looking to clean up its reputation, touching every aspect of the school from restrooms to test scores.
Changes weren’t received well by students who openly protested the cuts to faculty and the new order that banned the use of cell phones and music players during the school day.
Under stricter rules, tardy students are locked out of classrooms, bathroom breaks during class time aren’t allowed and the lunch hour was pushed back to 1:40 p.m.
Superintendent Dwight Jones told students he’s not settling for half successes.
“Right now, 50 percent of the kids in this school don’t graduate high school. Is that acceptable to you? Think about that. Right now, some of the friends that you’re with aren’t going to graduate. Is that OK? That’s unacceptable to me. I think you guys ought to kick all of us out.”
- Year built:
- Principal (Year Hired):
- David Wilson (2011)
- Approximately 2,250
- School Report Card:
Compiled by Gregan Wingert