Volume 45, No. 8, Feb. 8, 2017

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Thank you to our counselors and student advisors

It's National School Counseling Week, and we're celebrating our incredible school counselors and student advisors. Thank you for all you do to help our students!

Show off your tech-savvy class

Teachers, are you using technology creatively in your classroom? Are students engaging with technology in a visually captivating way? We want to tell your story in a brief video. Help us show our community all the great ways technology is impacting student achievement by filling out this simple Google form

Trip Reduction surveys due Feb. 17

Staff at all sites with more than 50 employees must complete the mandatory Trip Reduction survey before Feb. 17. The brief survey from Valley Metro asks how employees commute to work. All answers are confidential. Surveys will be distributed by department and school secretaries. Any questions? Contact Miguel Flores at 480-472-0223.

Complete your health assessment before Aug. 31

If you're a benefits-eligible employee, don't forget to complete your Cigna health assessment to earn 50 points toward your wellness incentive for 2017-18. The deadline to complete the assessment is Aug. 31, 2017. Learn more about the incentive and ways to earn your full 100 points. 

January's customer service rock stars

Congratulations to the top three schools that received the most customer service survey submissions from their communities in January:

  1. Lindbergh Elementary - 31 customer service surveys
  2. Keller Elementary - 13 customer service surveys 
  3. Lehi Elementary - 8 customer service surveys 
We received numerous compliments about several schools and departments, including this comment from a parent at Brinton Elementary: "My two children came to Brinton from Apache Junction. There, they were absent a lot and didn't want to go to school. Since coming to Brinton, they've joined school activities and clubs and refuse to miss school. I'd like to especially thank Mrs. Przeor, Mrs. Bellows, Mrs. Kee, Ms. Chavez and Dr. Estes. They are amazing women who have done so much for our family. Thank you all for allowing us to become part of the Brinton Bears."

Need more customer service cards at your location? They're free from the warehouse — code: 9135151ESW. An online form is available on the district home page. Consider placing a link on your school or department home page.

Like HR, recruit a new colleague

The district is always looking for outstanding additions to the Mesa Public Schools team. Employees are our greatest recruiters. Human Resources has established a social media presence to attract new talent, and they need your help. Please follow on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn, and share posts with your network.

Instagram - @mesajobs

Don't worry. You won't be overwhelmed with posts. We appreciate all you do for Mesa Public Schools. Thanks for your help in our efforts to attract the best and brightest to support our students.

Student receives award from Holly Williams at 2014 Student Service Awards

Submit Student Service Award nominations

Each spring, Student Services honors:

  • special education students for outstanding achievement
  • teachers, students, support staff, community members, schools and district departments for exemplary service and contributions to students with disabilities

We count on you to nominate people who make a difference. Award winners will be honored in a ceremony April 7 at Mesa High School.

Nomination forms and guidelines are available on the Student Services site. Nominations are due March 3.

For more information, contact Mindy Herbert, special education secretary, 480-472-0702. 

Echoes of Learning literacy conference

Zaharis Elementary hosts Echoes of Learning, a literacy conference, Sat. March 25, 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Hear from renowned author Pam Muñoz Ryan (Echo, Esperanza Rising), Donalyn Miller and Frank Serafini. Breakout sessions will include live models of practice with real students and teachers in their classroom communities of learning. Preregistration for district educators is now open.

Free self-defense course for women

District security is offering a free two-day self-defense course for women at the Administrative Services Center, room 303. Registrants must attend both sessions, which are 5 to 9 p.m. March 3 and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. March 4. Space is limited, so register early. Contact Jaime Jimenez at 480-201-2473 to register and learn more.

SeaWorld® San Diego Teacher Fun Card

SeaWorld® San Diego offers a free Teacher Fun Card and two free single-day tickets to all active and certified K-12 Arizona credentialed teachers. Register on the Sea World educational programs website. The card is valid for unlimited admission to SeaWorld® San Diego through Dec. 30, 2017.

Extended movie ticket sales

By popular demand, hours for Harkins movie ticket sales at the Administrative Services Center lobby have been extended. New hours are:

  • Monday, Tuesday, Friday: 8:45 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Wednesday: 8:45 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Thursday: 7:45 a.m. to 4 p.m.

As a reminder, tickets are $7 (exact cash or check only) and not valid for special engagement showings.  

Cybersecurity awareness

When in doubt, throw it out. Links in email and online posts are often how cybercriminals compromise your computer. If it looks suspicious (even if you know the source), delete it. Contact the online help desk for more information.

Apply for instructional support jobs

Teachers on non-exclusionary contracts are eligible to apply now. To be considered for a position, you must complete an online application no later than Feb. 21. After creating an internal account on Recruit & Hire, find these opportunities by searching "Curriculum."

  • Educational technology trainer
  • Instructional intervention specialist 
  • MA10 teacher
  • Professional development specialist
  • Title I School Improvement specialist

Please note: These are anticipated openings that may change.

Cue the applause

January Educator of the Month Alan Dosmann recognized by Board clerk Ben Smith at Jan. 24 board meetingCongratulations to our January Employees of the Month, who were recognized at the Jan. 24 Governing Board meeting: April Buckley, third-grade teacher, Webster Elementary; Alan Dosmann, physical education teacher, Sirrine Elementary (pictured); Jo Ann Hallstrom, resource center specialist, Roosevelt Elementary and Julie Mitchell, bookstore manager, Red Mountain High School. Chandra Hansen, Dobson High School, was honored as Volunteer of the Month.

On Feb. 7, three administrators were named Rulers of the Month: Mel Kelley, special education director; Dr. Steve Hogen, athletics director; and Andrea Erickson, Whitman Elementary principal. Ruler of the Month is sponsored by Mesa Association of School Administrators (MASA) and Horace Mann. All principals and directors are eligible to be nominated by their peers.

Congratulations to Penny Briney, principal at Irving Elementary. She was named Principal of the Year by Mesa Independent Professional Educators. Briney received the award due to consistently high evaluations from Irving teachers for the past 10 years.

Itinerant special education teacher Wendy Lathrope Sanders has been named to the Phoenix Zoo Teacher Advisory Council. As a council member, she will help the zoo develop educational programs and serve as an ambassador. 

Redbird Elementary has been named a gold-level school by Beat the Odds Institute. Last year, the school earned silver-level status.

On Jan. 13, Dobson High School boys basketball coach Rick McConnell reached a major milestone: 600 wins. McConnell and his father, Dick, are the winningest father-son duo in state history, with 1,377 wins.


Send news to

Heidi Hurst, district communications supervisor

Submit an award or recognition or tell us about a special event via our good news form.


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