SUSD Update:
  • Dr. John Kriekard will be SUSD's Superintendent through June 30, 2020.  He has served as the district's Acting Superintendent since May 2018.  The SUSD Governing Board voted 5-0 at its February meeting to approve a one-year contract with Dr. Kriekard.  
    "Dr. Kriekard's experience and considerable esteem for SUSD students and community make him the ideal candidate for this role," said Board President Patty Beckman. "I believe in 
    his leadership and look forward to our continued relationship."
  • Dr. Kriekard is a past SUSD principal, assistant principal and assistant superintendent, and most recently served as superintendent of Paradise Valley Unified School District.  He returned to SUSD last spring from retirement.
  • Also at its Feb. 12 meeting, the SUSD Governing Board approved $4.26 million in restoration and renovation work at Navajo Elementary School, 4525 N. Granite Reef Rd., Scottsdale, beyond what will be paid for by the school district's insurance company.  The Navajo campus has been closed since an overnight fire on Aug. 22, 2018, that resulted in extensive damage. The school has been operating out of the former Oak Learning Academy campus, 7501 E. Oak St., three miles away, since then.  
  • The Cherokee Elementary School redevelopment project continues.  At its upcoming March 7 study session, the SUSD Governing Board is scheduled to receive an update from architects Orcutt Winslow on their work to date with the Cherokee community on possible ways to accommodate the school's many needs, regardless of whether it is remodeled or rebuilt.  The Board is expected to review contractors' bids for the Cherokee job at its March 19 meeting.
  • SUSD'S K-12 students can look forward to new math textbooks next school year.  An 80-member committee comprised of teachers, administrators, curriculum specialists and parents spent 10 months identifying learning gaps in current math materials, developing criteria for new textbooks and reviewing different math publishing houses' wares.  In making its endorsements to the Governing Board, the group took into consideration student and teacher instructional materials, homework assistance resources and online materials for students, professional development offered to teachers, and alignment with Arizona mathematics standards.  The Board backed the recommendations unanimously.

Our last batch of Kindergarten Roundups take place this week!
For the  complete schedule, click here.
Find out what makes our kindergarten classrooms special:
Meet  the teachers, principals and fellow parents, and get a sense of the
great things ahead for your little learner with SUSD!  We appreciate your referrals!

New Pima Traditional & Hopi Campuses Dedicated dedicate

The sixth  and seventh major projects to be constructed with voter-approved 2016 bond funds are officially complete.   Dedication ceremonies were held Feb. 14 for Pima Traditional School (above, left), located at 8330 E. Osborn Rd. in Scottsdale, and Hopi Elementary School (above, right), located at 5110 E. Lafayette Blvd. in Phoenix.  

Pima originally opened as a K-8 school back in 1959, with four renovations occurring over the years, most recently in 2002.  Bound on the west by homes and on the east by baseball and softball fields, the new Pima's 13-month construction worked around school breaks and vacations in order for students to remain on campus.  The school's layout is conducive to its new "traditional" curriculum, which formally went into effect this school year for Pima's more than 500 students.


Working within the confines of a tight, 11-acre lot, maneuvering construction around Hopi's 58-year-old buildings required a creative reconfiguration of the campus.  Here, too, Hopi's more than 700  students were able to continue their studies while new facilities were being built around them.  Pieces of the old Hopi can still be found around campus: student-designed decorative tiles are installed in classroom hallways, animal-shaped reading benches grace a shaded, outside walkway and bricks from the school's old buildings fill planters around campus.

Common to both schools are covered, outdoor learning spaces; improved security, with new lock-down equipment and notification systems; SmartBoards in all classrooms; dedicated gymnasiums and cafeterias; student and teacher collaboration areas; and redesigned traffic patterns to relieve neighborhood congestion.  These new facilities will become points of pride in their neighborhoods, and serve SUSD students and teachers well for many years to come!



Field Day for SUSD's Special Kids

Mountain View Park, next to Cochise Elementary School, turned into a massive sports venue on Feb. 20 as 250 SUSD special needs students enjoyed their annual Field Day.  There was fun for everyone, with more than 30 activities, all modified to support the students' specific, individualized needs.  Bubble-blowing, target toss, tug-of-war and bounce houses were among the favorites.

Student volunteers from SUSD high schools and the district's Special Education Department were on hand to help out.  Officers from the Scottsdale Police Department were on hand with their trusty steeds, four-legged and two-wheeled, and a police dog made friends with students as tactical officers explained how they use drones and robots in their work.

Other community partners included the Scottsdale Fire Department, U.S. Bureau of Land Management and Chick-fil-a.  Mascots from the 
Arizona Diamondbacks, Phoenix Coyotes and 
Arizona Cardinals even helped the Chaparral Firebird oversee a flag football game!

Special Kid Field Day provides participants with the chance to be fully integrated leaders and productive members of teams, all while having fun!  

The annual event is organized by SUSD's Adapted P.E. teachers.

Sports Wrap

AzPreps365 photo

A week earlier, the Coronado Dons, led by junior Gabriel Gonzalez's hat trick, blew open their championship match early in the second half against Northwest Christian.  Over the course of the post-season, the #3 Dons outscored their opponents by an impressive 24-3 goals.  Coronado won the state soccer title two years ago in the 4A division.

Bouncing over to hoops, the Chaparral boys team came within one quarter of pulling off what would have been a major upset over defending champs Pinnacle.  It was not to be last Tuesday night at ASU's Wells Fargo Arena, but the Firebirds gave it their all.  Alem Huseinovic led the 'Birds with 18 points.

National Signing Day:  Around the country and here in SUSD, high school student athletes put pen to paper Feb. 6 to accept offers to play collegiate sports.  From Seattle University in the northwest to Alabama in the southeast and many points in between, SUSD students declared their athletic intentions.  Carry on - you're going to be great, in the classroom and on the fields, courts and tracks!

National Recognition for Firebirds' State Cross Country Champ

The Gatorade Company has selected Chaparral High School's Abi Archer as its 2018-19 Gatorade Arizona Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year.   The senior distance runner (pictured top right in story above, 2nd from the left, in red Stanford sweatshirt) won the state cross country championship each of the past three years.  The Gatorade award, in its 34th year, recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character both on and off the racecourse.  Abi maintains a higher than 4.0 grade point average, runs track in the spring and somehow finds time to also volunteer with Circle the City, a Phoenix organization that provides healthcare to the homeless.  Congratulations, Abi!
SUSD Coaches Excel, Too

Chaparral High School's girls soccer coach Robyn Carlson and swim & dive coach Richard Krzyzanowski have been honored as 2018 Sectional Coaches of the Year in their respective sports by the National Federation  of State High School Associations' Coaches Association.  Other states in Arizona's section are California, Hawaii, Nevada and Utah.

While both coaches' teams won state titles this school year, it is the leadership and inspiration that they - and all SUSD athletics coaches - provide each season, day-in and day-out, that our student athletes will remember in the years to come, more than the wins and losses, and the Xs and Os.

2019 Parada del Sol

You just can't beat a good old parade, especially a Southwestern one!  This year's Parada del Sol was great - of course, SUSD's 20 entries in the parade had something to do with that!


Tax Credit Contributions Benefit SUSD Students

Have You Done Your Taxes Yet?

Tax credit contributions can be made anytime throughout the school year, but must be made by April 15 (not Dec. 31 anymore) - and you get to decide which tax year to apply it to!  Anyone who pays Arizona state income tax can contribute.

Please click HERE to learn more about making a tax credit contribution to SUSD.  Students and school programs depend on you to be able to offer learning opportunities beyond those made possible by state funding.  Thank you very much, in advance!

Upcoming Events

March 4:
All-District Winter Sports Awards Banquet, 6 p.m., The McCormick -
Invitation only
March 6: Early release - All grades - Professional Development
March 7:
SUSD Governing Board Study Session, 3 p.m., Mohave District Annex, 8500 E. Jackrabbit Rd., S cottsdale
March 11-15:
Spring Break: All SUSD schools & offices closed
March 19:
SUSD Governing Board Regular Meeting, 5 p.m., Board Room, Coronado High School, 7501 E. Virginia Ave., Scottsdale
March 20-21-22:
Elementary & K-8 schools Parent/Teacher conferences - Early release
March 21-22:
MIddle school Parent/Teacher conferences - Early release