ASAP members benefit from using ASBA to connect
What is ASAP and how does it bring value to your school district’s superintendent/governing board administrative professional? The Arizona School Administrative Professionals (ASAP) supports and offers resources to district staff who provide administrative support to governing boards and/or superintendents to develop training, peer support networks and recognition programs that address common needs and concerns of school administrative professionals.
This professional group was developed in consultation with governing board administrative assistants from throughout the state. ASAP member also have access to the ASAP listserv which is a resource for board and superintendent secretaries from across Arizona. This tool will enable board and superintendent administrative professionals to connect electronically with all those in the group to ask questions, share best practices and provide support to one another.
Click here to learn more about ASAP.
Equity Pre-Conference, April 21 focuses on Latinx AZ: Experiences, Impact, Influence and Inclusion
Registration opens March 8
Equity Pre-Conference, April 21 focuses on Latinx AZ: Experiences, Impact, Influence and Inclusion
From culture to commerce, Latinos have been essential to making Arizona what it is today. The success of Latino students and their families will determine who and what we will become as a state. Join us for a multifaceted look at Arizona’s largest student population and the factors that are influencing their education and futures. Topics include the state of Latino education, cultural and economic influences, public policy and historical trauma, and outreach, engagement and representative leadership.
SPECIAL FOCUS: CULTURE, RACE AND ETHNICITY
Since the founding of The Equity Event seven years ago, we have unwrapped the many influences, characteristics and circumstances that impact our students and contribute to gaps in opportunity and outcomes, among them family income, access to food and shelter, physical and cognitive ability, gender and gender identity, immigration status, and even the location of the student’s home and the district itself. Culture, race and ethnicity intersect with all those factors and are woven deeply into the lives of each and every student we serve. The heightened local, state and national dialogue around racial equity compels us as leaders to look at race more deeply. At this year’s Equity Event, we’ll investigate these rich, human aspects of our students and ourselves so that we can serve every student well and justly moving forward. Featuring Arizona poet laureate Alberto Rios and a special reading of his poem “A House Called Tomorrow.”
THE KEYNOTE SPEAKERS
Could invisible barriers be holding back your equity work?
Each of us are carries barriers or biases that we’re not even aware of. They influence what we think and the decisions we make. What are they and how can recognizing them help the students, school systems and the communities we serve? This year’s three keynote speakers will tackle those questions from their own unique perspectives – and help you do the same.
Founder and Lead Facilitator, Social Centric Institute
Dr. Jennifer Harvey
Educator, Author and Activist
Bill De La Cruz
Author, Facilitator and Former School Board Member
THE BREAKOUT SESSIONS
Are you getting started or ready to dig deeper? Either way, we’ve got breakout sessions for you!
At this year’s equity event, you’ll travel five pathways over two days in breakout sessions led by equity experts and experienced district leaders – all aimed at moving your board and district past those barriers and towards a more equitable system. Getting Started and Digging Deeper sessions will be offered in each of the five pathway areas.
Meet ASBA’s Santa Cruz County Director, Kathleen Pasierb
Get to know ASBA’s Board of Directors by reading their profile.
Name, district and county: Kathleen Pasierb, Patagonia Elementary School District #6, Santa Cruz County
How long have you been a board member? Four years
How do you define leadership in school boardsmanship? To lead as if the entire team of board members matter and to listen, respect opinions, provide an environment that is welcoming and acknowledge ideas of others.
What is your favorite ASBA conference/event and why? That is a difficult question. I like them all. I like BOLTS because of its straightforward information, the Annual Conference for the variety of presentations and for opportunity to network, the Legislative Workshop and Law Conference because it is so very informative. Politics can put a stranglehold on public education if we let it.
What do you like best about serving on the ASBA Board of Directors? I enjoy networking with my fellow county board members and rekindling relationships with those I have worked beside during my teaching career.
How has ASBA helped you become a better school board member? The conferences, events, trainings and seminars have shown me what is possible to accomplish as a board member in support of students, teachers and staff. Access to the policies act as readily available guidance. One on one conversations with staff members when issues arise. ASBA staff represent an excellent example of a group focused and organized around their mission, goals and values, enthusiastic to teach in their realm of expertise, and always cheerfully eager to help.
New ASBA video series: Importance of teaching Black history in classrooms
February is Black History Month. This month we take time to learn about the critical role Black people have had and will continue to have in our nation’s history, but also to remember Black history is American history. ASBA Black Alliance Officers were filmed speaking with superintendents on the importance of teaching Black history in classrooms and curriculums.
In these videos we will discuss why is it so difficult to do, why do certain people push back and how can Black history enrich all students? View the final two videos of our series with Berdetta Hodge, ASBA Black Alliance Vice President and Tempe UHSD school board member speaking with Dr. Kevin Mendivil, Superintendent in Tempe UHSD and Devin Del Palacio, ASBA Black Alliance Immediate Past President and Tolleson UHSD board member speaking with Dr. Dan Courson, Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum & Instruction, Paradise Valley USD.
Our students are more than test scores
By Monica Trejo, ASBA President-Elect
It has been nearly a year since our schools and communities were first impacted by COVID-19. As some districts plan to return or maintain in-person instruction, schools must now take on an additional heavy task: managing the safety of the school community and administering high stakes standardized tests. Governor Ducey recently signed HB2402, which enacts a moratorium on school letter grades for the 2020-2021 school year—schools will not receive A-F letter grades based on this academic year. While this was an ASBA Legislative priority and is welcomed by most in the educational community, I would advocate to suspend the state standardized testing requirements, another ASBA political agenda priority.
Unfortunately, the US Department of Education said on Monday that it does not intend to grant blanket waivers from the federal testing requirement as was done last year. This is disappointing to put it mildly.
COVID-19 has brought unprecedented challenges for our school communities; now, our students and teachers face additional pressure with state-mandated testing approaching fast. Who will truly benefit from this? Researchers have debated and disputed the benefits of standardized tests and the controversies surrounding the emphasis on achievement versus growth. A more useful form of testing to gauge student learning is through local and authentic formative assessments—not state standardized tests.
As a former special education teacher, my heart nearly broke every spring witnessing my students’ tears due to fear and anxiety caused by the AZMerit (and previously AIMS) assessment.
Our English Learners are also met with the incredibly difficult task of taking a test in their non-native language, which is not an ideal evaluation of their skills or knowledge. As a school board member, we annually review our district data compiled from the AZMerit. It is always met with mixed emotions. I am so proud of our students and schools who have excelled, and I am also reminded that these test scores do not define those that did not. Growing up in Arizona, I also took the state standardized test (AIMS).
When I received the results, it was no surprise to me that I had failed. I had many personal struggles at the time—ranging from food insecurity to family stress—that preoccupied my mind. Yet, I went on to graduate ranked first in my program at ASU, earned two Masters Degrees, and will soon be earning my doctorate from an Ivy League institution. A standardized test did not accurately measure my abilities or define me.
With the social-emotional challenges that our students have faced due to COVID-19, why would we add the academic trauma of standardized testing to their list of obstacles this school year?
Fortunately, USDOE will be entertaining waivers from federal accountability, including the 95% testing requirement, and Arizona should pursue those waivers.
If we are to be compelled to give the AZMerit this year, our first priority should continue to be the well-being of our students. We know they are more than test scores, and this year further illuminates that more than any other.
Register for Wednesday Webinars: Focus on Communications: How to Engage Your Community to Overcome Barriers to Trust: March 10, 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm
This webinar will help offer key examples and strategies when communicating the importance of transparency effectively. Presenters will offer examples and resources when crafting family engagement messaging to ensure you avoid common pitfalls and help your audiences consider family engagement more productively. The resources in this webinar are designed to help districts achieve these goals. Equipped with these strategies, school districts can collectively build the understanding and support they need to change the narrative around family, school and community engagement.
March 15 is almost here! Spread the news: ASBA’s student scholarships close soon!
Our student award contests are now being held in the Spring! Applications for all student awards are now open and must be received by 5 p.m. March 15. View award criteria, entry materials and other details by clicking here. Please pass on these student opportunities to your school district communities!
Jack Peterson Scholarship
The Jack Peterson Scholarship is awarded annually to exceptional high school seniors who plan to pursue college degrees in teaching. Recipients shall have maintained a high school record that reflects high academic achievement and regular attendance, respectable leadership and citizenship among peers, and sustained participation in school and community activities.
Amounts of the awards vary from year to year and are based on annual earnings from the scholarship endowment. Last year’s scholarships were $1,300 each.
The scholarship was established in honor of ASBA Executive Director Jack Peterson, who served the association from 1991 to 1998.
Panfilo H. Contreras Honorary Scholarship
The Panfilo H. Contreras Honorary Scholarship was awarded for the first time in 2013 by ASBA’s Hispanic-Native American Indian Caucus. Hispanic and Native American Indian students who are juniors or seniors in high school are eligible to apply for this scholarship to support their attendance at an accredited post-secondary institution. Last year’s scholarships were $1,000 each.
Just in case you missed the Leading for Equity webinar! View it now plus earn CEUs for attending webinars.
If you missed Wednesday’s webinar, view it now. In this session, you will be introduced to the newly developed Leading for Equity Workbook and curriculum that is designed specifically for school governing boards and staff looking to pursue educational equity in their district. This content is appropriate for those “getting started” in their equity journey as well as for equity champions looking to “dig deeper” to advance equity within their district. In this webinar, we will help set a foundational understanding of educational equity, the role of district leaders in pursuing education equity, the challenges associated with this work and a review a framework for facilitating discussions that move districts to action.
Join our #WednesdayWebinars!
Members have the opportunity to dig deeper into areas of Equity, Governance and Communications. Webinars are scheduled on Wednesdays with the goal of providing two webinars per month from 4 – 5 p.m. Webinars are live and recorded to view later if you can’t attend the live session. Registration is required to view recording.
Did you know? Hourly continuing education units (CEUs) can be earned for ASBA training webinars.
ADD THESE TO YOUR CALENDAR NOW!
- March 10, 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm, Focus on Communications: How to Engage Your Community to Overcome Barriers to Trust
- March 24, 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm, Tools for Embedding Multi-Cultural Perspective into Curriculum
- April 14, 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm, Making the Superintendent Evaluation Process Meaningful
- April 28, 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm, Building More Inclusive and Effective Student, Family and Staff Surveys
- May 12, 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm, Focus on Communications: Protocols for Social Media Engagement and Online (and Offline) Conversations
- May 26, 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm, Is Your District Ready for an Equity Policy?
Don’t forget to track your CEUs when attending our webinars!
Participation and credits for Academy of Board Development awards are tracked and accounted for through registration and attendance at eligible ASBA events and webinars. Credit is based on one hour of (classroom) instruction. Credit may range from one to several hours per developmental opportunity. Registration is complimentary. View all ASBA events and webinars on the ASBA website.
New superintendent searches plus other district openings
Queen Creek USD, Chandler USD and more
ASBA is excited to conduct superintendent searches for member districts. Currently we have openings available for Bowie USD. We also post district openings on our webpage which include Assistant Superintendent of Support Services for Queen Creek USD, Interim Superintendent for Chandler USD and more. Check for search opening, announcements, articles, and other resources by following Twitter and LinkedIn accounts especially created for search services.
AZEdNews Special Feature: Parents, teachers, school leaders urge Legislators to vote against voucher expansion
Parents, teachers, school superintendents, and school board members, including Arizona School Boards Association‘s Black Alliance and Hispanic-Native American Indian Caucus, as well as members of Save Our Schools Arizona urged Arizona Legislators during a news conference………READ FULL ARTICLE HERE
Upcoming ASBA Events
March 10, 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm: Wednesday Webinars: Focus on Communications: How to Engage Your Community to Overcome Barriers to Trust
March 24, 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm: Wednesday Webinars: Tools for Embedding Multi-Cultural Perspective into Curriculum
Plus more! You can find all Wednesday webinars on the ASBA webpage, https://azsba.org/events-asba/. Can’t view the webinar live? No problem. Go ahead and register and you will receive the recording automatically by email so you can view it later. There is no cost to register for this webinar. We encourage advance registration.
SAVE THE DATE: Virtual Equity Event, April 21-23
Registration opens March 8
SPECIAL FOCUS: CULTURE, RACE AND ETHNICITY
Since the founding of The Equity Event seven years ago, we have unwrapped the many influences, characteristics and circumstances that impact our students and contribute to gaps in opportunity and outcomes, among them family income, access to food and shelter, physical and cognitive ability, gender and gender identity, immigration status, and even the location of the student’s home and the district itself.
Culture, race and ethnicity intersect with all those factors and are woven deeply into the lives of each and every student we serve. The heightened local, state and national dialogue around racial equity compels us as leaders to look at race more deeply.
At this year’s Equity Event, we’ll investigate these rich, human aspects of our students and ourselves so that we can serve every student well and justly moving forward.
Featuring Arizona poet laureate Alberto Rios and a special reading of his poem “A House Called Tomorrow.”