A school-wide parade to honor a fifth-grade student with tumors will go on - AZEdNews
Sections    Friday March 31st, 2023

A school-wide parade to honor a fifth-grade student with tumors will go on

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  • Erin Dunsey   |   Peoria Unified School District

Peyton Gonzales

Update 10/27/20: The insurance company has agreed to cover two of the three treatments of Peyton’s experimental drug, but any positive vibes we can send her way are much appreciated. Peyton’s Parade is definitely still a go for 9:30 a.m. this Thursday!

WHO: All Peoria families

WHAT: A school-wide parade to honor a fifth-grade student with tumors

WHERE: Zuni Hills Elementary School, 10851 W. Williams Road, Sun City, AZ 85373

WHEN: 9:30 a.m., Thursday, Oct. 29

For weeks, Zuni Hills Elementary School in the Peoria Unified School District has been planning a parade to honor fifth-grade student Peyton Gonzales, who has been diagnosed with tumors in her brain, spine, hip, lungs, and kidneys.

Peyton was recently receiving treatment at St. Jude’s Hospital in Memphis, Tenn. but has since returned home and the family is looking into an experimental treatment as a last resort.

Peyton’s Parade was scheduled for 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, Oct. 29 outside Zuni Hills Elementary School.

A school-wide parade to honor a fifth-grade student with tumors will go on Peyton-2-768x1024
Peyton Gonzales

Principal Krista Lynch shared that her school would like to do a green-out, Peyton’s favorite color and also the color for her adrenal cancer). Staff and students will stand outside the school, wearing masks, and will be spread out in designated areas holding signs and well wishes, cheering for Peyton and providing her with encouragement.

Knowing that Peyton may not feel well enough to drive by the parade in person, Peoria Unified made arrangements to film the parade so that she may see all of the love and support from her school community either way.

On October 14, Peyton’s family received the devastating news that the insurance will not cover the experimental treatment that worked to cure a child in Peyton’s similar situation. Regardless, Lynch shared that Zuni Hills Elementary School is all in and Peyton’s Parade will go on.

Peoria Unified School District is nestled in the Northwest Valley of Peoria, Arizona and is home to 42 stellar public schools that are unique and created to fit the needs of all students. Peoria Unified is the choice district for more than 37,000 students and 4,000 staff, serving as one of the largest employers in the West Valley and one of the largest unified school districts in Arizona. The district has signature programs spread out between 34 kindergarten through eighth-grade elementary schools and eight high schools that excel in academics, arts, athletics and Career and Technical Education programs. The Strategic Plan outlines a laser focus on four key areas: Student Success, Safety and Well-Being, Stewardship of Community Resources and Community Connection. Above all, Peoria Unified is committed to transparency, parent involvement and ensuring that “Every Student, Every Day is Prepared to Shape Tomorrow.”