AUSTIN (KXAN) — An Austin teacher received national recognition — and a surprise! Fred Tabares, an art teacher at Small Middle School, received $10,000 worth of school supplies for his classroom and colleagues from the Food for Good Foundation.

Teachers are struggling as they deal with the rising cost of school supplies.

Tabares, known to his students as “Mister T,” teaches a dozen different classes to more than 400 students, and he is also a part-time dishwasher at a restaurant. He said the extra job helped him pay for the school supplies the students needed.

“It’s like the end of Indiana Jones in ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’ but with school supplies instead of government top secret crates, and that’s great,” Tabares said. “That’s incredible. It’s one last thing that my colleagues and I have to worry about this year.”

On top of teaching and his restaurant job, Tabares also helps coach the football team at SMS and even pitches in as a DJ at school events.

Adopt A Classroom said teachers spent an average of $750 of their own money on school supplies in 2021. Donating $5 would allow the organization to buy 35 pencils, 25 crayons, two notebooks and five glue sticks.