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Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Laveen Schools Set to Kick Off New Academic Year

schoolStudents throughout Laveen return to school this month with classes resuming Aug. 8 for the Laveen Elementary School district and high schoolers in the Phoenix Unified School. Classes at most of the charter schools also are underway or preparing to start.

Meet the Teacher Night for the elementary district takes place Aug. 4 from 5-7 p.m. and school officials encourage parents to ensure their children are familiar with their school, its campus and the start times before classes resume.

“Learning begins the first day,” said spokeswoman Kristen Landry. “It’s really important for parents to have the children on time the first day.”

Landry also notes that with the return of nearly 4,500 high schoolers and about 10,000 elementary students, drivers need to be patient and courteous to ensure safety of all students when dropping off and picking up children from schools and bus stops.

Laveen also is opening another brand-new school. Paseo Pointe, the district’s eighth K-12 school, opens with a Spanish-immersion program available for kindergarten and first grades. Each year an additional class will be introduced to the program until eventually dual language is offered to all the expected 1,200 students.

At press time about 750 students were enrolled in the new school, on 55th Avenue between South Mountain Avenue and Dobbins Road. Wheelbarrows and workers were still finishing last-minute jobs prior to the doors opening on Aug. 8. Kristi Pashley, who for the past several years led the accelerated program at Vista Del Sur where she was principal, is now principal at Paseo Pointe.

Also, with the passage in May of Proposition 123 by Arizona voters, the Laveen district was able to restore about $1.2 million. Dr. William Johnson, superintendent, sent a letter in May to parents detailing what the funding means for the district.

In summary, the money is being used in Laveen to provide pay increases for employees. The district employs about 750 teachers, administrators, bus drivers, and maintenance and office workers, making it one of Laveen’s largest employers.

“The Laveen Elementary School District used funds from Prop. 123 to support competitive salary and benefit packages for all Laveen staff,” Johnson said this month. “This allows us to recruit and, more importantly, retain high quality staff. Because we are able to fill positions quickly, we are better prepared to start the new school year.”

Johnson noted in his May letter that while the Prop. 123 money is welcome, it only restores about 48 percent of the funding that has been withheld from schools and it doesn’t assist districts with any money for capital spending. Districts continue to rely on community support and voter-approved budget overrides to complete upgrades and expansions at existing schools, as well as for programs such as art, music and PE.

“These are items essential to the success and quality of our schools. Your continued support confirms the investment we are making in our children, their future, and our community. We recognize the important role that our schools play in the quality of life in Laveen and will continue to strive to ensure a high quality school system and the success of every child,” Johnson concluded in the letter.

Laveen Elementary District Schools:

 

Cheatham Elementary School

4725 W. South Mountain Avenue
Laveen, Arizona 85339-9805

School times: 7:30-2:30

Office: 602-237-7040

Principal Andrew Wait, Await@laveeneld.org

PTO: Shauna Hanawalt, shanawalt@cox.net

Desert Meadows School

6855 W. Meadows Loop East
Laveen, Arizona 85339-9805

Office: 602-304-2020

School times: 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Principal Steve Preis, spreis@laveeneld.org

PTSA: Katherine Mingo, desertmeadowsPTSA@gmail.com

Laveen Elementary

4141 W. McNeil Street
Laveen, Arizona 85339-9805

School times: 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Office: 602-237-9110

Principal Dr. Robert Caplinger, rcaplinger@laveeneld.org

PTO: Sandra Bautista, sbautista@laveeneld.org

Maurice C. Cash Elementary School

3851 W. Roeser Road
Phoenix, Arizona 85041-9805

School times: 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Office: 602-237-9120

Principal Lisa Sandomir, Lsandomir@laveeneld.org

PTO: Greg Carroll, gcarroll@laveeneld.org

Paseo Pointe Elementary School

8800 S. 55th Avenue
Laveen, Arizona 85339-9805

School times: 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Office: 602-304-2040

Principal Kristi Pashley, kpashley@laveeneld.org

PTO: Maggie Jolly, mjolly@laveeneld.org

Rogers Ranch School

6735 S. 47th Avenue
Laveen, Arizona 85339-9805

Office: 602-304-2030

School times: 8:30 – 3:30

Principal Tim Thomas, tthomas@laveeneld.org

PTO: Elizabeth Fritts, lfritts@laveeneld.org

Trailside Point School

7275 W. Vineyard Road
Laveen, Arizona 85339-9805

School times: 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Office: 602-605-8540

Principal Sarah Zembruski, szembruski@laveeneld.org

PTA: Shawna Huxel, lexuhs@gmail.com

Vista del Sur Accelerated Academy

3908 W. South Mountain Ave.
Laveen, Arizona 85339-9805

Office: 602-237-3046

School times: 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Principal Jessica Epacs, jepacs@laveeneld.org

PTO: Jackie Alvarado, tigers@vistadelsurPTO.com

By Rose Hutchinson Tring

Rose Hutchinson Tring is a long-time journalist and owner of AZ Media Maven, a Laveen-based marketing and public relations company. She is also the founder of FinditinLaveen.com, a local business directory and free community calendar. Email her at rose@azmediamaven.com

 

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