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Gila County Superintendent Office Wins Grant to Train Science Teachers

Submitted by Roy Sandoval, Gila County Superintendent Educators working in rural areas face a particular set of challenges that can make even the simplest of tasks a headache. Far-flung schools and dirt roads mean teachers and students are isolated from resources that urban schools take for granted. The Gila County Superintendent’s office, however, is working to overcome these challenges, one grant at a time. Just recently, their team secured a $412,000 grant that will support raising student achievement in physical science county-wide. The grant’s focus area – physical science in grades three through eight – was selected as the target based on recent AzMERIT scores, which revealed that Gila County students could use a boost in this area. Read More »

Education, business and nonprofit leaders set sights on 2030 education goals

Arizona Education Progress Meter provides shared vision and framework to close the achievement gap, prepare students for success and strengthen Arizona’s talent pipeline and long-term competitiveness PHOENIX – Expect More Arizona and the Center for the Future of Arizona (CFA) announced today critical long-term education goals for the state. The newly released goals are part of the Arizona Education Progress Meter, a nonpartisan source of information that informs leaders and communities about where we stand as a state and the work that must be done to improve in areas ranging from quality early learning to postsecondary attainment and everything in between. Developed by Expect More Arizona and CFA, the Education Progress Meter was first launched in early 2016 and represents a set of key indicators that support a shared vision for education in Arizona. The vision is that every child receives an excellent education, every step of the way.   Indicators                                           Where We Are Today                Goal Attainment                                              42%                                           ... Read More »

Getting Kids Outside at Tonto National Monument

by Hilary Clark “Being outside allows children to be imaginative, spontaneous, and carefree, and allows them to gather their thoughts. It’s also a lot of fun!” Those are the enthusiastic words of Jennifer Smith, a National Park Service educator at the Tonto National Monument in Roosevelt. ‘Ranger Jen’ as she is affectionately known helps kids of all ages explore the Tonto National Monument and learn about the outdoors and prehistoric culture. Through the Every Kid in a Park program, fourth-graders and their families get a free pass valid for more than 400 national parks across the country. A National Park Foundation grant helps with transportation—paying for buses to get more than 200 elementary-school students from Payson, Globe, Miami, Pine and Tonto Basin to the monument. In all, Smith’s programs have reached more than a thousand young people this year, from pre-K to 12th grade As Smith leads students on hikes up to the Lower Cliff Dwelling she teaches them about desert plants and animals and the Salado people who built the dwellings. Although the hike is only a one mile round trip, it ascends more than 300 feet in elevation, giving everyone a good workout.  Once at the dwelling, students ... Read More »

Taliesin Globe-Miami Studio Project loses funding amid unfulfilled expectations

By Aimee Staten & Linda Gross The widespread optimism that surrounded the launch of last year’s Globe-Miami Studio Project, which many hoped would spur economic development and make the region a tourist attraction, appears to be gone. It has been replaced by hope from some that the investment this community made in the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture (Taliesin) will pay off as promised. Others, however, say they have seen too little fulfillment of the initial promises that the school laid out in its fundraising campaign here, which raised $785,000 in 2015. Just 18 months into a four-year project, the school is losing nearly a quarter of the pledged monies from its initial investors. Read More »

Walking Through History at Tonto National Monument

By Christa Sadler: Tonto National Monument    Imagine a place where history from every era surrounds you. At the Salado Cliff Dwellings at Tonto National Monument, stories and relics from thousands of years of Sonoran Desert life are to be found right at your feet, wherever you tread. Since the construction of these iconic cliff dwellings approximately 700 years ago, they have served as a home, a community of growing and evolving culture, and eventually an alluring spectacle for tourists exploring the “Wild West.” Read More »

How I spent by summer vacation. Teachers respond.

By: Debbie Leverance Summer vacation is here and teachers are living the sweet life. I remember thinking years ago how easy teachers had it – the perfect job for a wife and mother! Convenient schedule, home when the kids were, and relaxed weekends with family. Summers off camping in the woods or reading on the porch. As with most of our childhood imaginings, adult reality is a little messier, a bit less rosy and tempered by the bank balance much more than it should be. Read More »

Arizona Rural Policy Forum Heads to Graham County

Annual event brings rural leaders and advocates from around the state to connect and share resources June 26, 2017 (Thatcher, AZ) – The Rural Policy Forum, hosted by the Local First Arizona Foundation and Arizona Rural Development Council, connects rural economic development professionals, nonprofits, community leaders, business owners, and other rural stakeholders who are interested in sustaining rural communities. This year’s event will be hosted in the Safford and Thatcher communities August 9-11, 2017, showcasing what the region has to offer in terms of amenities and economic development opportunities. Read More »

Lee Kornegay student, Dennis Davis wins Spelling Bee

Lee Kornegay Intermediate School student Dennis Davis won the 2017 Gila County Spelling Bee held Feb. 23 in Payson. Davis spelled the word “feldspar” correctly to take home the title. He’ll compete in the Arizona State Spelling Bee on March 25 in Phoenix. High Desert Middle School Student Bradley Pollock earned third place. Rim Country Middle School’s Chance Hagler got second place. The Gila County Superintendent’s Office thanks the parents, teachers, administrators, judges, pronouncers, and Payson High School for helping make the event a success. Pictured (R to L) are Gila County Superintendent Roy Sandoval, Dennis Davis, Chance Hagler, and Bradley Pollock.   Read More »

Superintendent Roy Sandoval meets with stakeholders to discuss education challenges

GILA COUNTY- Gila County Superintendent Roy Sandoval recently brought together local school administrators and legislators for a conversation about some of the challenges that rural Arizona educators are tackling every day. Representatives David Cook and T.J. Shope as well as Senator Frank Pratt joined Gila County school administrators for the meeting on Friday, Feb. 10 at Globe High School. Read More »

Spelling Bee scheduled for Feb. 23 at Payson High School

GILA COUNTY – Each year, teachers and administrators volunteer to spend many hours organizing and hosting classroom, school and district level spelling bees so they can send their top spellers to the County Spelling Bee. The Gila County School Superintendent’s Office encourages you to support County students and schools by attending this year’s Gila County Spelling Bee. Read More »