WASKOM — Some Waskom ISD students will be taking advantage of new technology, books and other items soon, thanks to the more than $12,000 awarded to district teachers on Friday as part of the Waskom ISD Education Foundation’s annual grants to teachers awards.

“We were formed in 2013, and by the end of this year, we will have given more than $100,000 to the district in the form of grants to teachers, senior scholarships and $1,000 cash giveaways to teachers at the beginning of every school year,” Foundation President Terry Slone said on Friday.

Seventeen teachers across the district‘s campuses were awarded grant money on Friday by the Foundation, and this year so many grant applications were received that the district also jumped in to offer about $2,000 of its own money to help meet the needs.

“This is my first time receiving a grant, and I really didn’t think I would get it so I’m so excited,” Waskom High School teacher Michael Cason said Friday.

Coming up next, the foundation will award two $500 scholarships to graduating seniors in May.

Slone said the Foundation hosted several fundraisers throughout the year to collect money for the teacher grants, through events like the Belk Charity Sale and through local business donations — but surprisingly, the largest amount of fundraising came from the teachers themselves.

“We raised about $9,000 this past year from the teacher donation campaign, so that’s amazing,” Slone said. “It’s teachers helping teachers.”