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Teachers 'beaten down' by staff shortages, COVID

With the latest surge of the coronavirus straining an already vulnerable K-12 workforce nationwide and many school officials saying they are struggling to find enough substitutes to cover classrooms, some state officials have exercised their power to alleviate teacher labor challenges.... Read more»

Protesting masks and racism education, the 'patriots' take on Arizona’s school boards

Arizona school board meetings have been seeing an unprecedented number of disruptions by far-right, angry and yelling crowds furious that students were required to wear facemasks in schools, many organized by outside groups led by Steven Tyler Daniels, a self-identified conservative “patriot” activist who is trying to launch a new fringe-right political party.... Read more»

Ducey rescinds mask mandate for Az schools, but Tucson districts are keeping requirements

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey continued to dismantle mandates he put in place last year to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, rescinding an order that required face coverings in the state's schools. However, districts in the Tucson area immediately said they would maintain mask requirements through the end of the school year. ... Read more»

Ducey calls for $600 million in permanent income tax cuts

Gov. Doug Ducey will push to make $600 million income tax cuts, phased in over the next three years, and he wants those cuts to be broad-based so they will affect as many Arizonans as possible. However, history has shown that today’s surplus can quickly turn into a deficit, and that tax cuts that go into effect when revenues are strong can become a drag on the state’s budget when the economy goes south.... Read more»

Hoffman 'not optimistic' schools will be ready for Aug. 17 in-person reopening

Arizona Schools Superintendent Kathy Hoffman said Wednesday that the already delayed Aug. 17 start of in-person classes may have to be pushed back again in light of continuing concerns about COVID-19 safety.... Read more»

Ballot initiatives scale up for post-lockdown push to gather signatures

Since ending a brief hiatus caused by the coronavirus outbreak, campaigns for three ballot initiatives have ramped up their hiring of petition circulators over the past several weeks in preparation for their final drive for the November ballot.... Read more»

Az teachers union calls for student strike over coronavirus concerns

Students should stay home from school until Gov. Ducey and Arizona education and political leaders "can present a detailed plan that assures students will be returning to safe classrooms" during the COVID-19 outbreak, the state teachers union said.... Read more»

Teachers speak out about working conditions, and they’re not happy

For the past decade, the vast majority of Arizona counties have faced a teacher shortage at the beginning of the school year, and as school districts head into the summer many teachers expect more of the same. And they’re not surprised.... Read more»1

State, nat'l rankings vary widely on Az student performance

School officials boasted that nearly 72 percent of Arizona fourth-graders scored “proficient” or above on a state reading assessment in 2010. A year later, a national assessment put the number of proficient fourth-grade readers at just 26 percent. So do Arizona administrators have a math problem or a reading problem? Neither, it turns out.... Read more»1

Az schools request No Child Left Behind waiver

Arizona officials have asked to replace federal standards under the No Child Left Behind act with state-level student performance standards and a school accountability system they say will be more efficient.... Read more»