With more than 70 percent of Dallas ISD students being of Hispanic descent, the Cinco de Mayo holiday is one of importance.
On May 5, 1862, the Mexican army defeated the French in what came to be known as Cinco de Mayo. This holiday commemorates a Mexican Army victory at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-American War (1861-1867). It has become a celebration of Mexican culture and heritage for Mexican-American people.
One school in particular at Dallas ISD, San Jacinto Elementary, celebrated the day with a community festival.
On May 1, the aroma in the hallway at San Jacinto Elementary was reminiscent of Grandma’s cooking, with meat marinating and rice cooking on the stove. Festival-goers enjoyed plates full of traditional Mexican food as children ran through the hall looking for the next game to spend their tickets on.
Inside the gym, popcorn could be smelled with the sound of Mexican music playing. The gym walls were lined with games occupied by students, big and small. The parents were happy to see their children, some still in school uniforms, enjoying themselves after a long week of class.
“I like that he gets to see his friends and I see other parents,” Maria Reyes said about her second-grader Andru. “I get to know his friends also since I am always working during the day.”
This is the third annual Cinco de Mayo festival at San Jacinto. Principal Hugo Avila said this year more parents became involved than ever before. Sweet treats were donated for the cake walk, and parents and teachers manning the game stations.
“This festival gives us a chance to celebrate our heritage as Hispanics and Mexican Americans and the community period,” Avila said.