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Southern California Dealer Provides Ram Pickup, Fiat 500X as Rewards for Area Students, Teachers

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LOS ANGELES, April 29, 2016 /PRNewswire/ --

  • Honors students and educators with perfect school year attendance
  • "It's a Gas to Go to Class" giveaway now in its fifth school year
  • Victorville Motors' and Desert FIAT's program helps keep kids in classrooms
  • FCA US California Business Center a partner since the program's inception
  • Teacher eligibility has grown from 50 teachers the first year to more than 400 this year

This weekend, two lucky and hard-working students and two teachers will head into summer driving free Ram pickup trucks or Fiat 500X sport-utility vehicles courtesy of Victorville Motors and Desert FIAT of Victorville, Calif.

Each year, Victorville Motors, a Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep® and Ram dealership in the High Desert region of Southern California, recognizes area students and teachers who each have achieved perfect attendance during the school year. The "It's a Gas to Go to Class" giveaway was launched in the 2011-2012 school year.

"The programs culminate each year with a celebration, this weekend students, teachers and support staff with perfect attendance have a chance to not only win a new vehicle, but also a bevy of prizes," said Victorville Motors Chief Operating Officer Tim Watts. "But this is not just a car giveaway, it's a celebration of education in the High Desert. This is our baby and we're proud of it. We're helping to get kids into the classrooms." 

This year's drawing will be held on Saturday, April 30 at the High Desert Event Center in Victorville, Calif.  In this year's "It's a Gas" sweepstakes, two students with perfect attendance will each drive away in a new 2016 Ram 1500 pickup truck, two teachers will enjoy driving home in their new 2016 Fiat 500X sport-utility vehicles and one classified staff member will win a 2015 Fiat 500c. 

There were 15 participating high schools in this year's program, giving more than 22,000 students the chance at winning a pickup truck. More than 8,000 teachers and classified staff members from 120 participating schools had a crack at the 500X sport-utility vehicles and the Fiat 500c.

In the summer of 2011, with the economy still reeling, Victorville Motors noticed that the previous few years had been especially hard on local schools. With budget reductions and crucial programs being cut, schools (students, teachers, staff and administrators included) were finding less and less enthusiasm to go to school.

Responding to the need, Victorville Motors developed and launched "It's a Gas to Go to Class" to encourage and reward students to attend class. The goal was simple: raise overall attendance levels and with that additional funds would be collected from the state for the schools. Additionally, the dealer's leadership hoped to stimulate student/parent/school interaction, campus excitement and a positive atmosphere within their local high schools.

With cooperation, buy-in and teamwork from students, parents, schools and local businesses, the "It's a Gas" program was born. The program uses incentives, such as TVs, gift cards and scholarships to the grand prize of a free new vehicle, to achieve those goals. Feedback from parents, students, teachers, principals, superintendents, business owners and the community all point to "It's a Gas" as having a dramatic and positive effect on school attendance.

The program was so successful with students that teachers asked if they could be included. The program for teachers, "It's a Gas to Teach Class," was born and implemented in 2013. Teachers also now have the chance to win a new vehicle with their perfect attendance. Naturally, the last piece of the educational puzzle was added this school year (2015-2016) to include the classified staff members as well. "It's a Gas to Support Class" is currently finishing up its first year running.

Program Results:

  • 668 percent increase in students with perfect attendance since the program inception
  • Approximately a $10 million increase in incremental budget allocation to local schools based on daily attendance (ADA) funding from the state
  • Teacher program also has resulted in a significant reduction in teacher absenteeism

"There is a world where people don't just let things happen, they make them happen," said Jeff Eschenbach, Director of the California Business Center, FCA US LLC. "They don't check their dreams at the door. They get involved. These are values we teach and strive to live by at FCA. Tim Watts and Victorville Motors are living this! We're proud of the work they are doing in their local community and for the example they are setting for all of us."

For more info:
www.youtube.com/user/victorvilleMotors
It's a Gas to Go to Class: www.victorvillemotors.com/itsagas.htm
It's a Gas to Teach Class: www.desertfiat.com/toteachclass.htm
It's a Gas to Support Class: www.victorvillemotors.com/supportclass.htm

About FCA US LLC
FCA US LLC is a North American automaker with a new name and a long history. Headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan, FCA US is a member of the Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (FCA) family of companies. FCA US designs, engineers, manufactures and sells vehicles under the Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram and FIAT brands, as well as the SRT performance vehicle designation. The company also distributes the Alfa Romeo 4C model and Mopar products. FCA US is building upon the historic foundations of Chrysler, the innovative American automaker first established by Walter P. Chrysler in 1925; and Fiat, founded in Italy in 1899 by pioneering entrepreneurs, including Giovanni Agnelli.

FCA, the seventh-largest automaker in the world based on total annual vehicle sales, is an international automotive group. FCA is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "FCAU" and on the Mercato Telematico Azionario under the symbol "FCA."

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To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/southern-california-dealer-provides-ram-pickup-fiat-500x-as-rewards-for-area-students-teachers-300260176.html

SOURCE FCA US LLC

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