Daily schools update: Chinle principal wins Milken Educator Award - AZEdNews
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Daily schools update: Chinle principal wins Milken Educator Award

Chinle Junior High Principal Melissa Martin, Hugs Her Son, Maverick Martin, After Receiving The Milken Educator Award, A Title Given To The Best Teachers In The Country For Educational Excellence. Photo Courtesy David Smith/ Navajo Times

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Updated April 28, 2022: Chinle Junior High Principal Melissa Martin was honored this week as a Milken Educator Award winner during an assembly she thought was to welcome Supt. of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman.

Supt. Hoffman described how Martin’s helps, loves and supports students and provided them with necessities during the COVID-19 pandemic, which hit the Navajo Nation particularly hard.

See what schools are doing to help students catch up on learning loss during the pandemic, decrease absences, and how decreased enrollment affects students and staff.

The latest dashboard update shows that confirmed cases of COVID-19 rose to 2,021,524 as of Wednesday, April 27, 2022, in Arizona, up 2,350 cases from last week, and 29,951 people in Arizona have died from COVID-19 since the pandemic began.

In Maricopa County there are 1,277,230 confirmed cases of COVID-19, 254,402 in Pima County132,365 in Pinal County62,685 in Yuma County57,442 in Mohave County48,065 in Yavapai County43,766 in Coconino County38,236 in Navajo County31,506 in Cochise County22,460 in Apache County17,295 in Gila County16,659 in Santa Cruz County11,987 in Graham County5,209 in La Paz County and 2,217 in Greenlee County.

Yuma Elementary School District One students and their families had fun doing different activities during Family Sensory night.

Remember to thank teachers for all they do during Teacher Appreciation Week.

See how Canyon Springs School celebrated STEM with AZ SciTech Festival.

Arizona State University fashion students find a way to ease the stress their fellow college students may be feeling during finals week.

Kyrene Schools celebrates a student honored as a finalist for School Connect’s Student Champion of the Year.

Students interested in learning about film production this summer might want to take a look at this class at Scottsdale Community College this summer.

Read two books and get three free rides at the Pima County Fair.

Rio Rico High School students in sports medicine and health share their knowledge.

April 26, 2022

Maryvale High School Special Education Teacher Kareem Neal has been named the first Arizona teacher named to the National Teachers Hall of Fame which was established to bring recognition to the outstanding teachers around the nation.

Neal, who has taught for 20 years, worked three jobs to support himself early in his profession, and he told azcentral.com that he aims to help his students develop the skills necessary to be work independently or in supportive group spaces.

The Arizona Department of Education is continuing to express the state’s appreciation for teachers as part of its

Whether it’s for keeping our students safe or making them smart like their parents, Arizona teachers deserve a thank you for all they do to support our communities. Use #TYteachers or https://t.co/XsRPSrO0kt to thank a teacher today! pic.twitter.com/vslh7PV5gx

— Arizona Department of Education (@azedschools) April 25, 2022

Glendale Community College is hosting a volunteer fair to wrap up volunteer month!

Scottsdale Community College is providing free workshops on stress and anxiety as finals near.

The school year is coming to a close, but Creighton School District is still working hard to make sure all their teachers are able to tackle the challenge!

Families gathered to enjoy spring during The Creighton Academy’s family picnic day.

Take a look at ASU’s graduating class of 2022, who have endured through the pandemic and shutdown to earn their degrees.

ASU’S LGBTQ+ organizations emphasize the importance of representation in academia.

April 21, 2022

Tomorrow is Earth Day, so take a little time to think about what you can do to make our world a better place now and for future generations and take this short quiz about Earth Day while you’re at it.

Schools are providing shelter for people’s whose homes are in danger from the Tunnel Fire in Flagstaff.

The latest dashboard update shows that confirmed cases of COVID-19 rose to 2,019,174 as of Wednesday, April 20, 2022, in Arizona, up 2,377 cases from the last week, and 29,852 people in Arizona have died from COVID-19 since the pandemic began.

In Maricopa County there are 1,275,525 confirmed cases of COVID-19, 254,407 in Pima County132,295 in Pinal County62,659 in Yuma County57,401 in Mohave County47,983 in Yavapai County43,638 in Coconino County38,200 in Navajo County31,452 in Cochise County22,369 in Apache County17,200 in Gila County16,662 in Santa Cruz County11,961 in Graham County5,206 in La Paz County and 2,216 in Greenlee County.

See how a Phoenix school developed a program to help students deal with trauma after several students parents died from COVID.

Tempe Elementary School District celebrates a student who helps welcome new students.

See how a group is seeking to improve K-12 civics education in Arizona.

Deer Valley Unified School District students hone their robotics skills in Lego League.

As Teacher Appreciation Month approaches, Yuma County Teacher of the Year says she appreciates getting to help students grow and learn.

Dysart Schools congratulates two students for earning a prestigious scholarship.

Arizona Education Association named a Puente de Hózhó Elementary school teacher with its Human and Civil Rights Award.

Flagstaff Unified is preparing for the Community STEM Celebration on April 30.

Peoria Unified celebrates a physical education teacher for his lasting impact on students’ lives.

A bill that would require teachers to post learning materials and activities online failed, but could be revived again before the end of the session.

April 19, 2022

The Pride of Peoria is a distinction awarded to the top one percent of Peoria Unified School District’s staff in recognition of their contributions to the school and district. Recipients are selected based on letters of recommendation.

If your student is interested in getting ahead in math, registrations are open for TUHSD’s Summer Math Academy!

Higley Unified School District is holding a school arts festival at Williams Field High School.

As the school year comes to a close, students continue to work on their game.

Maricopa Community Colleges Foundation, thanks to a $50,000 grant from State Farm, continues its support towards the Cyber/AI/Automation programs and the Maricopa Information Technology Institute – East Valley.

April 14, 2022

April is community college month! Click here to learn more about your local colleges in Maricopa. Interested students should fill out Maricopa Community College‘s general scholarship to instantly apply for hundreds of scholarships – all from one application!

Estrella Mountain Community College is holding an online and in-person job fair for skilled trades.

Mark your calendars, Mesa Community College will hold a Jazz concert on April 19!

Student-athletes from across the state celebrated the next step of their academic and athletic journey on signing day.

Student-athletes were not the only ones being recognized as Chandler Unified celebrated Students of the Year.

Dr. Carlos F Perez, principal at Country Meadows Elementary, and the administration team volunteered to cover shifts for their short-staffed cafeteria.

Peoria CTE schools have many options available for students. They also offer business-related courses for students who are interested in the field.

A free vaccination event will be made available for kids in Queen Creek.

April 13, 2022

More than 100 students took part in a competition to see who has the best construction skills at Catalina Hills High School in Tucson, while construction leaders officiated and helped students do their best work as they seek new employees for their fast-growing industry, Arizona Public Media reports.

Gov. Doug Ducey signed a bill today that requires district and charter schools to hold a moment of silence at the start of each school day.

The latest dashboard update shows that confirmed cases of COVID-19 rose to 2,016,797 as of Wednesday, April 13, 2022, in Arizona, up 2,777 cases from the last week, and 29,823 people in Arizona have died from COVID-19 since the pandemic began.

In Maricopa County there are 1,273,651 confirmed cases of COVID-19, 254,195 in Pima County132,363 in Pinal County62,636 in Yuma County57,364 in Mohave County47,901 in Yavapai County43,590 in Coconino County38,153 in Navajo County31,415 in Cochise County22,306 in Apache County17,190 in Gila County16,659 in Santa Cruz County11,957 in Graham County5,202 in La Paz County and 2,215 in Greenlee County.

Students are honored for their math gains in Deer Valley Unified School District.

Higley Unified celebrates its award-winning Cooley Middle School Color Guard.

Cave Creek Unified School District thanked a teacher who always helps out with a gift card courtesy of First Watch Cafe.

Interested in learning about urban farming? Then check out this program.

An outgoing Deer Valley Unified School District school principal welcomes the incoming principal.

See how Art Resource Center in Tempe is helping art teachers with free supplies for their students.

Marana Unified School District celebrates teachers honored by a group that promotes women educators professional and personal growth.

A student shares an exciting creation with her physics teacher.

A bill to extend the School Facilities Board for three more years is headed to the Governor for his signature, as a court hearing starts on a capital funding lawsuit that says funds to maintain and build schools and school building has been severely cut for years.

An award-winning director is joining ASU’s new Narrative and Emerging Media program – a collaboration between it’s journalism and film schools.

See why the University of Arizona’s engineering program might just be for you.

Kindergartners share their learning with educational technology in Tucson Unified School District.

April 12, 2022

See what students say they learned about their mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic in this article from The Arizona Republic.

See why Chiefs for Change members say broadband internet and laptops are essential school supplies for students now.

See what Phoenix Union High School District Supt. Dr. Chad Gestson says about their efforts to eliminate the Digital Divide and how hotspots aren’t going to cut it.

It’s time to celebrate! Maryvale High School Teacher Kareem Neal, the 2019 Arizona Teacher of the Year, is the first Arizona teacher inducted into the National Teachers Hall of Fame.

Learn more about how positive student- teacher relationships help boost teachers motivation and lead to more interesting and engaging learning for students.

Learn how grandparents are raising their grandchildren after 200,000 children lost a parent to COVID in the U.S.

Educators are you looking for art supplies? Then check out the Art Resource Center in Tempe.

Hear about some of the athletics programs at Kyrene School District.

How COVID-19 changed an assistant principal’s perspective on what students are doing, courtesy of Education Week.

Two Marana Unified School District students have been honored for their aspirations in computing with scholarships, internships and other resources.

Take a look at a Rio Rico High School Poetry Slam and more.

April 8, 2022

The Arizona Board of Regents approved raising tuition and fees between 2% and 3% at all three state public universities for undergraduates as well as increases for online, graduate and international students.

The increases will not affect in-state undergraduates at University of Arizona and Northern Arizona University who are part of a program that pledges to hold tuition rates steady for four years.

Glendale Elementary School District partners with Southwest Human Development during the school’s Family Day.

Mesa Public Schools students are ready for the poultry shows at the Maricopa County Fair.

See how school leaders are working to ensure all students have access to Wi-Fi at home to do their school work as they outline their plans to end the digital divide.

Take a look at this family event at Peoria Unified School District and contact Arizona Council on Economic Education to bring a Financial Literacy Family Night to your school.

Phoenix Union High School District honors the people making schools safer.

See why helping children lean and talk about their emotions can help them get ready to learn, courtesy edutopia.

Buckeye Elementary School District celebrates friends helping friends.

Learn more about getting ready for kindergarten and about programs in your school district at your local school’s Kindergarten Open House.

See how you can show support from students of military families around the state during the Month of the Military Child, courtesy the Arizona Department of Education.

Union Elementary School District thanked DonorsChoose for supporting their teachers and students.

If you’re looking to do something fun with your kids this weekend, take a look at Funergy’s events at Tempe Marketplace and Scottsdale Fashion Square.

Mountain Ridge High School’s hockey team was recognized at the Arizona Coyotes game last night for their achievements.

Cartwright School District counselors and psychologists learn together.

Take a look at this report on the juvenile justice system to see its impact on U.S. youth.

If you’re working on your taxes this weekend, there’s still time to donate to your local school and receive an Arizona tax credit.

April 7, 2022

Matthew Ellsworth, senior infielder at Mountain Pointe, spent five years away from baseball after an ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) tear in his arm. After complications with the natural healing of his arm, Ellsworth and his parents elected to undergo Tommy John Surgery, “one of the most feared surgeries in baseball.”

The recovery time for the surgery was over a year, but Ellsworth was able to return to the field and play.

“I’m not going to lie, it was emotional,” Ellsworth said. “After being denied for so long, it felt really good.”

Read Zach Alvira’s story, AFN Sports Editor, here

April is National Financial Literacy Month and was first recognized in the U.S. in 2004 as declared by President George. W. Bush. The goal is to highlight the importance of financial literacy.

Student filmmakers are gathering at Corona del Sol High School to showcase their films at the annual Tempe Union Film Festival Screening on April 14, 6 p.m.

Maricopa Community Colleges Foundation and Glendale Community College are contributing toward scholarships for students with financial needs.

Queen Creek Unified School District’s newest school, Crismon High School, is nearing completion!

It’s National Assistant Principals Week as schools around the state are recognizing their assistant principals.

More highlights in education from around Arizona:

April 6, 2022

Arizona educators worry that legislation limiting classroom discussion of race, ethnicity and sex could make teaching American history more difficult, reports The Arizona Republic.

Parents of students interested in what their children will be learning in class can take offer their feedback on curriculum being considered for adoption at Paradise Valley Unified School District and serve on adoption committees too.

The latest dashboard update shows that confirmed cases of COVID-19 rose to 2,014,020 as of Wednesday, April 6, 2022, in Arizona, up 6,840 cases from the last week, and 29,681 people in Arizona have died from COVID-19 since the pandemic began.

In Maricopa County there are 1,272,999 confirmed cases of COVID-19, 253,451 in Pima County131,381 in Pinal County62,610 in Yuma County57,317 in Mohave County47,913 in Yavapai County43,529 in Coconino County38,107 in Navajo County31,364 in Cochise County22,246in Apache County17,117 in Gila County16,649 in Santa Cruz County11,940 in Graham County5,182 in La Paz County and 2,215 in Greenlee County.

Students in Buckeye Elementary School District play a game using divergent and creative thinking.

See how letting students follow their interests can boost learning and creativity, courtesy edutopia.

Deer Valley Unified School District students take part in a STEM challenge.

Flagstaff Unified School District invites parents to take part in a free parent webinar on what to do when someone talks about ending their life.

See how Arizona foundations are helping Read on Arizona improve early literacy.

Tolleson Elementary School District thanked their paraprofesionals for all they do for students, families and school staff.

See how Rio Rico High School students are preparing for a school event.

AZ SciTech Institute is excited to be part of STEM Night at Benson Primary School.

Take a look at some strategies high school students can use to study for their upcoming Advanced Placement exams.

Pima JTED celebrates a graphic design alumni working with Sunset Embroidery and Screen Print.

April 5, 2022

Arizona Legislators are considering Senate Bill 1211, sponsored by Sen. Nancy Barto and 14 co-sponsors, would expand requirements for students’ parents’ access to instruction materials that would include district and charter schools posting classroom learning materials and activities on their website. 

Hear what two educators told KJZZ 91.5 FM’s The Show about the impact of the bill on teachers and parents.

See why Phoenix Union High School District submits all their high school seniors transcripts to ASU.

Education Forward Arizona reminds you that Arizona Gives Day continues.

See art created by Cartwright students in their Art Show opening tonight.

See what educators say is essential to good teaching and why relationships come before learning.

Suntec Concrete presented three Washington Elementary School District educators with supplies for their classrooms.

April 4, 2022

Arizona Legislators have increased state funding for education by 44% since 2008, before the Great Recession led to severe cuts in state funding for education, but that translates to just 5% more in per-pupil funding over the past 14 years to $5,710 per students just 66% of the national average, according to an article in The Arizona Republic.

The latest dashboard update shows that confirmed cases of COVID-19 rose to 2,007,180 as of Wednesday, March 30, 2022, in Arizona, up 10,143 cases from the last week, and 29,268 people in Arizona have died from COVID-19 since the pandemic began.

In Maricopa County there are 1,268,293 confirmed cases of COVID-19, 252,925 in Pima County130,396 in Pinal County62,571 in Yuma County57,289 in Mohave County47,756 in Yavapai County43,404 in Coconino County38,081 in Navajo County31,305 in Cochise County22,205 in Apache County17,018 in Gila County16,611 in Santa Cruz County11,939 in Graham County5,172 in La Paz County and 2,215 in Greenlee County.

A quick reminder that it’s testing week for many students across Arizona.

Avondale Elementary School District welcomes next year’s kindergarteners.

Tucson Unified School District encourages students to share what their library connects them to.

Tempe Elementary students share their dreams for the future.

Earlier coverage


March 1, 2022 – March 29, 2022: Daily schools update: An event-filled weekend of school arts festivals and a CTE competition

Feb.2, 2022 – Feb. 28 Daily schools update: College in Ukraine powered by ASU would have welcomed students next month

Jan. 13, 2022 – Feb. 1: Daily schools update: Students learn more about Year of the Tiger during Lunar New Year


Dec. 20, 2021 – Jan. 12, 2022Daily schools update: AZ doctors urge schools to require masks as COVID surges

Nov. 23, 2021 – Dec. 17, 2021: Daily schools update: Tolleson Union uses grant to launch Uber-like ride share service for students

Nov. 9, 2021 – Nov. 22, 2021: Daily schools update: Education Advocates get Tax Referendum on 2022 Ballot

Oct. 27, 2021 – Nov. 8, 2021: Daily schools update: Mesa Mother Relieved to get her Young Child Vaccinated

Oct. 12- Oct. 25, 2021Daily schools update: Supply chain issues cause problems for Arizona school cafeterias

Sept. 27 – Oct. 11, 2021Daily Schools Update: How will children becoming eligible for COVID-19 vaccine change schools’ prevention measures?

Sept. 14 – Sept. 27, 2021Daily schools update: Students decision to mask up may have stopped a classroom COVID-19 outbreak

Aug. 24 to Sept. 1, 2021: Daily schools update: COVID-19 outbreaks rise among students in Maricopa County

Aug. 17 to Aug. 23, 2021: Daily schools update: FDA approves Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine

Aug. 3 to Aug. 16, 2021: Daily schools update: Arizona school mask mandates receive presidential praise

July 19 to Aug. 2, 2021Daily schools update: Teens struggle with mental health as school starts

June 20 to July 14, 2021Daily schools update: Arizona lawmakers ban mask requirements in schools

June 14 to June 17, 2021Tempe Union’s board approves comprehensive mental health policy

June 1 to June 11, 2021It’s time to get students enrolled in school for fall & ready for in-person classes

May 17 to May 28, 2021A year after George Floyd’s murder, a look at empathy, equity, what’s changed & what hasn’t

May 10 to May 14, 2021Students ready for graduation ceremonies

May 4 to May 6, 2021Amendment to bill would prohibit teachers from discussing controversial policy & social issues not essential to learning objectives

April 28 to May 3, 2021Thank a teacher during Teacher Appreciation Week for all they do for students

April 21 to April 27, 2021: 3 years after Red for Ed there’s much left to do

April 12 to April 20, 2021: How & why teachers discuss trial with students; Schools keep masks after Gov. rescinds mandate

March 29 to April 9, 2021Children, young teens may be eligible for COVID-19 vaccine before next school year

March 15 to March 26Masks are still required in all schools; Video: Dr. Christ’s news conference today

Feb. 24 to March 11, 2021: COVID-19 aid funds will help AZ students, families & schools

Feb. 11 to Feb. 23U.S. Dept of Ed: Students must take standardized tests, but there’s flexiblity on when & how

Feb. 2 to Feb. 9Video: Supt. Hoffman gives State of Special Education address

Jan. 21 to Feb. 1Black History Mural Month Project to highlight pioneers of the Black community launches in Phoenix

Jan. 10 – Jan 20How students engage with Inauguration Day


Dec. 21, 2020 to Jan 8, 2021Teachers help students deal with attacks on Congress, Capitol

Nov. 30 – Dec. 16Watch it now: Dr. Christ asks people to avoid holiday gatherings with people they do not live with

Nov. 18 – 25COVID-19 cases rise before Thanksgiving adding to school and hospital leaders’ concerns

Nov. 16: More schools return to online learning as COVID-19 cases rise

Nov. 2 – 13: $19 M grant would help schools with teacher development, stipends, reading & math curriculum, summer ed resources and moreOct. 20 to Oct. 30: AZDHS amends COVID-19 school benchmarks

Oct. 7 – Oct. 19What are teachers doing ahead of elections to support students afterwards

Aug. 25 – Sept. 8: Parents voice concern about online class size; school nurses prepare for students

Aug. 12 – Aug. 24: Students, teachers affected by Zoom outage

July 30 – Aug. 11Parent organizes co-op for learners; group rallies for in-person school days after benchmarks release

July 13- July 30: Teachers prepare for digital learning and back to school

June 29 – July 12Video: Gov. says ‘Goal is to get children back to school when it’s safe;’ Schools lay out learning models

June 29: Video: Gov. delays in-person classes to Aug. 17 due to rise in COVID-19

June 15 – June 29: Video: Gov. pauses re-opening of some businesses as COVID-19 cases rise

June 24: Plan provides more funding, flexible instruction as schools re-open

May 26 – June 12: Increase in COVID-19 cases marks a new daily high

May 20 – 25: AZ Dept. of Ed releases COVID-19 guidance to schools for summer programs, back to school

May 11 – 19: Arizonans consider workplace safety, what back to school will look like amid COVID-19

April 26 – May 10: Stores re-open, COVID-19 testing blitz resumes on Saturday

March 12 – April 7, 2020Coronavirus response: Cases rise; AZ Day of Giving