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Sup Douglas: Prescott Listening

11 June 2015  
Superintendent Douglas to Visit Prescott on “We Are Listening” Tour

WHO: Superintendent of Public Instruction Diane Douglas

WHAT: Superintendent Douglas’ “We Are Listening” Tour

WHERE: Prescott High School Ruth Street Theatre

1050 N. Ruth St., Prescott AZ 86301

WHEN: 5:30-7:30 p.m., Thursday, June 11, 2015

WHY: To listen to Arizonans express their views on current education issues facing Arizona’s K-12 students.


Editor’s note: We will attempt to do live updates, but it may depend on the wifi signal inside the Ruth Street Theater. Watch this space.




5:26 Screen notes: "This is a public discussion, not a debate."

The panel consists of Rep. Noel Campbell, Supt. Douglas and Leila Williams. L-R.

All questions will be rhetorical. A couple of school board members are here, no council members.


Michael Allengood: 

Funding: we know we are 50 th in the nation. Use bully pulpit. Gov. Solution too little too late.

High stakes testing: shouldn't teach to the test.

Charter schools: wants an audit of charter schools.



Steven ?: Supports Michaels comments especially on testing. Procedures for dumbing down children. Totally opposed tests to evaluate teachers. Test scores highly variable.

Against school choice, or public funding for any choice, including private or charter. "The only choice that should be considered is how to make the [district] schools better. 


Cecelia: Lets get behind education in AZ. This not a red or blue issue, this is a red, white and blue issue.

Standards are used throughout industries.

A school had $50/year budget for art. Total budget for year, not per student.

Talks about Partners In Education. PIE.



Scott Farnsworth: Parent and educator. Suggests tracking abilities in higher Ed.


Joann Clark: Suggests preparing for trades. Supports desire to drop Common Core. Teachers need guidelines.

Before Carter schools followed guidelines if the Constitution.


Dwight Jaeger: incoming capabilities decreasing. Against CC. Teachers are capable. Funding is diluted by sending to Washington DC.

Would allow funding for private and charter schools.


Stan Yib?: when he first started teaching, spent 90% of time teaching, when he retired, spent at least 50% of his time filling out paperwork for govt.

Need to get federal govt completely out of state education. Thinks it will save money in long run.


Shirley: wants to see copy of contract with CC. thinks schools should recognize difference in social issues.

very seldom do you hear of child failing.

Look at it and solve problem.

Suggests utilizing of retirement people.

More public meetings on what school is doing in public. 


Pam? : We want the best professionals, we need more funding. People should be ashamed not to approve a bond.

Doesnt like charter schools, thinks they get too much money Compared to district schools.

Very passionate.


name??: speaking of JTEDs.

AZ grad rate of 75% kids graduate.

teaches agriculture.

JTED takes a tax cut. Said they really took a 50% cut. Doesn't want to recapture what they lost, needs more funding.

We don't receive 100% of our funding, but we do 100% of our jobs.

Are you listening or ignoring?


Maxine: They only accept the very best. We have to accept everyone.

Wants a plan or a study be developed to level the playing field.


Sandy Jack: nobody we couldn't compete against, but now that's not true. We killing the competitive drive. Needs to reignite competitive spirit in schools.

Tougher grading system.

Needs to get politics out of schools. Get federal govt out of education. Change tenure and unions. 

Let the teachers teach, parents need to be more active and involved.

We are the victims of bureaucracy and politics.

What happened to vocational ed? Done aren't cut out for college. Provide them alternative opportunities. 

Finally, take that new math and shove it.


Dr, Orthopedic Surgeon: Went to school here, came back with family.

Teachers leaving, students leaving.

Wants to keep his kids in educational system. Wants to maintain high quality education and extra curriculars.

i don't have answers but I have pride in my hometown.

would like to equalize pay for teachers across state.


Metra? From Phoenix, family in Prescott.

Thanks them for their forum. 

 Common Core helped her son be more coherent in writing, sees specific improvement.

 Feels CC better prepares the students For better "deep" comprehension.

Thinks transfer students are better able to be assimilated.

Wants to know how students testing will compare to those in other states.

seriouly consider work that is done to date and don't move the state backwards.


Sonya Tenney: Great community here. I dont feel like our schools are failing. Our schools are great, but we're beginning to face big disabilities. In last 5 Years, have lost 60% of teachers. 

Believes charter schools will hurt public schools.  

Supports CC. Wants to give it a fair chance.

Main point needs more funding.


Rita: Retired teacher. Flailing with CC, especially math.

Couldn't help student with math or language homework. Says CC is expecting cognitive skills beyond realistic student abilities.

Child is brilliant but after 3rd grade CC, she thinks she is stupid.


Mary: moved here 2 years ago, has students in charter schools.

Watched YouTube videos because my teacher didn't feel like teaching. 

Students are in BASIS, high standards. High performing teachers rewarded. No entrance exam.

The enemy is the powers that be that tells them what to do. Needs more local control.


??? The U.S. spends more per student than most other countries, but grades are low.

Believes in competition in education, wants to see vouchers. Put parents in charge of education. Local control. Take charge of child's education.

look at states that do well in education.

give authority for appropriate discipline in classroom.


Donna Kessler: Would like Supt Douglas to educate us on what's wrong with CC.


Craig Aarps: just became parent 10 months ago.

District schools receive more that charters. As far as teacher retention is there not enough money or is it the system?

i want my daughter to be an individual. America is about freedom. 

Teachers should reinforce what parents believe, not the other way around.

maybe parents should be able to choose a school. Why can't we be individuals?


Nathan Tenney Student body president. Amazed at PUSD. 50% turnover rate in last 3 years. The notion that PUSD schools are failing is bogus.

Asking for more funding, need it right away.


Pat Shaw: tired of blaming Feds for everything. Doesnt like being last in funding. 

Wants everyone to have quality public education. We have to pass bonds. What made it great is that everyone could have a public school education. Not freedom.


Dickerson Changed careers to be a financial pro in education. The charter chain he worked for is a business. 

Cuts of $2m, teachers cut, schools closed.

a public school makes more money.

schools make community. 

Equal funding

 Marti? CC based on requests. AZ can modify some. 

The standards should be looked at, more rigorous. Wants to give them a chance. Don't throw them out, not seen something better yet. If CC is thrown out, what replaces it?

thinks there is flexibilitY. Teaching students number sense behind it. 

Wants to invite them back next year when it's raining. To see buckets for leaking roofs.


Ananda Chartier: Loves what she does, puts in 10 or 12 hours day. Then she caters. I'm the face of a Prescott teacher.

Don't have money to keep things in good working order. 

Public education is not failing. PUSD is not failing. We have Flynn Scholars. 

27 teachers/classified Left PUSD this year. 

We are, as a workforce getting tired. 

We're not failing. In my 28 years of teaching, I dont remember having this opportunity. 

I understand we don't want to just throw money at it, but maybe we could throw a little. We're 50th, couldn't we get to 25th and then stop throwing money at it?


Noel Campbell says that help is on the way, points to the Governors plan.


Supt Douglas promises to return in the fall, and annually.

points out that teachers and districts have to advocate equally for all, but parents can advocate for their individual students. 

One size fits one, she reminds those in attendance. 


End of of the live update!