Tag: Arizona Capitol Times

Ducey focuses on water, school safety, teacher shortage in State of the State. See more state education news here

| January 15, 2019
Ducey focuses on water, school safety, teacher shortage in State of the State. See more state education news here

Gov. Doug Ducey said securing Arizona’s water future is his chief priority during his State of the State address Jan. 14 at the Capitol in Phoenix. …

The Safe Arizona School’s plan with more school counselors, more police officers on campus, improved background checks and restricted access to firearms for people who are a lethal threat “will make our schools safer and it’s time for us to get this done,” Ducey said. …

Ducey said more is needed for K-12 education funding with a focus on results, reforms and resources. …

“Four years ago, I heard what sounded like a really good idea to address the teacher shortage,” Ducey said. “If someone graduates from an Arizona university, is willing to stay in Arizona, and teach in a public school, why not allow them to graduate debt-free by providing a scholarship?”

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Arizona schools win big as state racks up $330M in land sales. See more state education news here

| January 8, 2019
Arizona schools win big as state racks up $330M in land sales. See more state education news here

Earlier this year, a piece of state-owned land in north Phoenix sparked an hourlong bidding war. The winner? Arizona school.

The 269-acre parcel in Desert Ridge sold for $79 million, about $25 million more than its appraised value. Since then, the Arizona State Land Department has been on a selling spree.

The agency charged with managing 9.2 million acres across Arizona sold more than $330 million in land during 2018. That’s up from $44 million in 2017.

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Douglas: Legislature shortchanges school voucher program. See related news here

| December 27, 2018
Douglas: Legislature shortchanges school voucher program. See related news here

Outgoing Superintendent of Public Instruction Diane Douglas accused Arizona lawmakers of routinely underfunding the Department of Education’s effort to oversee the state’s voucher program, leaving millions of dollars earmarked for administrative costs untouched. …

In all but two years since the voucher program was launched in 2011, lawmakers have allowed the Department of Education to spend less than half of what’s prescribed by law, according to a memo sent by Douglas to legislative leaders and Gov. Doug Ducey.

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Prop. 305 defeat doesn’t end fight over voucher expansion. See related news here

| November 15, 2018
Prop. 305 defeat doesn’t end fight over voucher expansion. See related news here

More than 1 million voters rejected lawmakers’ attempt to allow every public school student in Arizona to attend private or parochial schools on taxpayer dollars – but the fight isn’t over.

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Arizona education board adopts new standards, support for evolution. See more statewide education news here

| October 24, 2018
Arizona education board adopts new standards, support for evolution. See more statewide education news here

The state Board of Education on Monday rebuffed a bid by schools chief Diane Douglas to adopt standards for public schools crafted by a Christian college for Arizona.

But whether schools may be allowed to use the standards from Hillsdale College remains an open question. Several board members said it might be appropriate to have that as an option for schools that choose not to follow the standards for history, social studies and science that the board did adopt, by a 6-4 vote.

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Arizona universities travel the state helping students learn more about college admissions, financial aid. See more state education news here

| October 3, 2018
Arizona universities travel the state helping students learn more about college admissions, financial aid. See more state education news here

As part of the Achieve60AZ initiative, organizations across Arizona – including the state’s three public universities Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University and University of Arizona – are seeking ways to increase the number of Arizonans with post-secondary degrees or credentials from the current 42 percent to 60 percent by 2030.

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RedforEd movement creates pledge for Arizona candidates. See related news here

| September 19, 2018
RedforEd movement creates pledge for Arizona candidates. See related news here

The Arizona Education Association has created a pledge it will ask candidates for office to sign in order to hold them accountable on their promise to fund public education in the state.

Arizona teachers are continuing the fight for pay raises and classroom funding even though the InvestInEd initiative was removed from the November ballot by the Arizona Supreme Court. 

The initiative, also known as Proposition 207, was expected to bring in $690 million of additional funding to Arizona public schools, according to backers. InvestInEd would have raised income tax rates to individuals who made more than $250,000 and households that made more than $500,000.

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Arizona schools chief candidates debate vouchers, charters’ oversight and more. See related news here

| September 19, 2018
Arizona schools chief candidates debate vouchers, charters’ oversight and more. See related news here

The two contenders for state schools chief found one key agreement in a debate Thursday: Both oppose Proposition 305.

Democrat Kathy Hoffman said there is no reason for the plan approved last year by the Republican-controlled Legislature to make vouchers of taxpayers’ dollars available for all 1.1 million students to attend private or parochial schools, with an initial cap of 30,000 students. …

Republican Frank Riggs, a former California congressman, said he has no problem with the vouchers, called “empowerment scholarship accounts.” He said there is an argument to be made for greater availability. But not for all.

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Pay raise puts slight dent in Arizona teacher shortage. See related news here

| September 12, 2018
Pay raise puts slight dent in Arizona teacher shortage. See related news here

Nearly one in four teaching vacancies that school districts had this year remain unfilled four weeks into the academic year.
The new report by the Arizona School Personnel Administrators Association found that the 178 school districts and charter schools who responded to the survey reported they needed to fill 6,227 slots this school year.

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Arizona school-choice backers promote vouchers to undocumented immigrants. See other education and political news here

| August 29, 2018
Arizona school-choice backers promote vouchers to undocumented immigrants. See other education and political news here

A group promoting school choice in Arizona is marketing the state’s controversial voucher program to Spanish-speaking parents by telling them immigration status isn’t a barrier to receiving public money to attend private school.

American Federation for Children’s online Spanish-language pitch states: “Arizona has a state-funded program that pays for private schools for thousands of children who live in this state. They don’t verify income or immigration status. Children don’t need to have or maintain certain grades.”

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