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Arizona Department of Education to Deregulate Education

arizona department of education logoSedona AZ (June 18, 2015)Today, the members of the Title 15 Working Group (Working Group) were announced. Superintendent of Public Instruction Diane Douglas sought the creation of an annual independent group to propose legislative changes to reduce unnecessary burdens and outdated statutory provisions affecting Arizona’s public schools.

“Arizona’s education code over time has grown vastly and is not comparable with student achievement. I strongly support more funding for Arizona’s classrooms, and one way to do that is to free up existing funding by relieving Arizona’s public schools from spending vital funds on unnecessary administrative requirements,” Superintendent Diane Douglas stated. “Just as getting rid of unnecessary regulation helps businesses, deregulation will help students.”

AZ Education Superintendent Diane Douglas

AZ Public Instruction Superintendent Diane Douglas

The Working Group is a team of public volunteers. None of the members are lobbyists, representatives of organizations, or employees of the Arizona Department of Education. The members have diverse expertise and knowledge in Arizona’s K-12 education system. They include school superintendents, human resources personnel, food service professionals, business managers, a parent, a teacher and other education stakeholders who are impacted daily by the statutes.

The Working Group is chaired by Ernest Calderón and the Vice-Chair is Kevin Hegarty.

“As the Working Group reviews the K-12 education statutes, we will be doing so by asking, ‘How does this law help kids? Is it required? Or does it increase student achievement or improve accountability?’ Our schools are burdened by ineffective administrative tasks; therefore, the Working Group’s proposed changes will redirect a school’s time, effort, and money back to improving student success,” said Mr. Calderón.

The Working Group will be available to the public for comments and suggested legislative changes during a public forum on July 8, 2015, from 5:30-7:30 in the evening at Thunderbird High School, 1750 West Thunderbird Road, Phoenix, Arizona 85023. The meeting will take place in the conference room in Building A.

Arizona State SealThe public may also submit suggested changes to PolicyInbox@azed.gov. Please provide the members any suggestions that you may have; the Working Group is eager to propose changes next legislative session that will greatly benefit the students of Arizona.

The Title 15 Working Group Members are:

1. Ernest Calderón (Chairman) – President Emeritus of the Arizona Board of Regents and Partner in Ridenour, Hienton and Lewis law firm providing expertise in education law (Policy Representative).

2. Kevin Hegarty (Vice Chairman) – Executive Director of Business and Operations at Laveen Elementary School District (Business Operations Representative).

3. Erica Avila Hlavaty – Director of Student Services focusing on transforming the special education program at Isaac School District (Special Education Representative).

4. Jeremy Calles – CFO at Kyrene Elementary School District (School Finance Representative).

5. Jeanne Casteen – Member of Creighton School District Governing Board and current teacher at North High School (Teacher and School Board Member Representative).

6. April Hamilton – Associate attorney at Ridenour, Hienton & Lewis law firm practicing in the area of education law (Policy Representative).

7. Ricardo Hernandez – Deputy County School Superintendent and CFO at the Office of the Pima County School Superintendent (County Representative).

8. Todd Jaeger – Associate Superintendent and General Counsel and Executive Director of Human Resources at Amphitheater Unified School District (Support Services Representative).

9. Jody Johnson – Founder and CEO of Pointe Charter Schools (Charter School Representative).

10. Dr. Quinn Kellis – Superintendent of Madison School District (Superintendent Representative).

11. Bill Maas – Retired Associate Superintendent of Fiscal Services for Deer Valley Unified School District (Superintendent Representative).

12. Dr. David Peterson – Superintendent of Scottsdale Unified School District (Superintendent Representative).

13. Thomas Pickrell – General Counsel for Mesa Public Schools (Large District and Legal Representative).

14. Jennifer Reynolds – Parent of four school aged children (Parent Representative).

15. Carol Weekly – Director of Child Nutrition at Queen Creek Unified School District (Health and Nutrition Representative).

16. Travis Zander – CFO at Agua Fria Union High School District (High School & School Finance Representative).

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  1. Dear Arizona Superintendent Diane Douglas,

    Every year we spend millions of dollars on highway litter cleanup efforts and school vandalism however, based on my inquiries to schools Principals and Administrators in our Verde Valley region, no one is teaching our students about the money we spend repairing the damage to their schools and picking up litter on our highways.

    Without this education our students go into the workplace with little knowledge about how their bad habits effect local businesses that may hire them , our economy and the image of Arizona.

    Could this be a topic we could get into the school system criteria sooner than later?

    Gary Chamberlain
    FVUSA Freelance Writer
    “America the Beautiful & BagReadyJobs”
    Empowering our nation’s youth
    (928) 202-1186

  2. Dear educators, residents and elected officials,

    One of many stories about Arizona school vandalism.

    Our students aren’t being taught that there consequences for their actions and if they are, they aren’t getting the message. If our highway litter is the report cards for adults, then they have also failed to learn and to teach their children.

    Mustang Express


    Educators, what lessons are being taught in the classroom?

    If you are teaching anti-vandalism and litter lessons we would like to hear from you.

    Gary Chamberlain
    “America the Beautiful & BagReadyJobs”
    Empowering our nation’s youth

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