PXU Newsletter December 16, 2021

Have A Safe Winter Break, PXU Family!

This is the last PXU newsletter of 2021. We have shared a lot of amazing things this year, and we are looking forward to sharing more good news with you in the new year. Here is a message from our Superintendent Dr. Chad Gestson to kick off our Winter Break!
PXU - Winter Break Announcement Dr. Gestson

Winter Break COVID Testing and Vaccination Updates

During Winter Break, we will be offering testing at 4 locations on Tuesdays and Wednesdsays (please see the first graphic below). Our vaccination events will return in January beginning with Camelback and Carl Hayden on Monday, January 3rd. Our rotational Saturday events will resume at Metro Tech on January 8th. If you need to get vaccinated during Winter Break, please visit the Maricopa County COVID Vaccination portal. Click here to be redirected to the Maricopa County COVID Vaccination portal.

For information about our testing efforts, visit PXU.org/COVIDTesting.

For information about our vaccination efforts, visit PXU.org/BeHealthy.

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PXU Graduation 2022

Our Graduation schedule for May 2022 is live! It is not too early to plan ahead for the celebration of our graduating students. See the graphics above for the schedule. For more information about graduation, visit PXU.org/Graduation.

Linda Abril's December 2021 Graduation

On Wednesday, December 15th, Linda Abril had nearly 50 students graduate (pictured above). It was an amazing ceremony filled with great speeches and amazing performances by Maryvale's Mariachi, Las Panteras de Oro.

Congratulations to our Linda Abril December 2021 graduates! We are so proud of all of the hard work and dedication that you have all placed on your education and getting to the big day.
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Trevor Browne Marketing Program Named National Retail Federation's Rise Up Partner for 2022

Our Trevor Browne Marketing Program were named the National Retail Fedaration's Rise Up Partner for 2022! The NRF visited Trevor Browne to interview John-Martin Rigsby, the teacher for the program, Principal Ms. Streeter, and students in October. They recently released a publication about Trevor Browne's program on their website. Mr. Rigsby will be attending an awards ceremony in January in New York City to accept this award on the program's behalf.

Click the button below to be directed to the article about Trevor Browne's program and what this accomplishment means for them.

Congratulations, Trevor Browne Marketing! Thank you for representing Phoenix Union!

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Phoenix Union Sustainability Officers Meet With Councilwoman Ansari

Our Phoenix Union Sustainability Officers met with Councilwoman Ansari and Jimmy Arwood from Superintendent Kathy Hoffman's office (photo above). At this meeting, Councilwoman Ansari introduced herself, talked about growing up in Arizona, working for the United Nations right out of college with a focus in Climate Change, decided to run for council because she realized it's "at the local level where you can make the most change". She also praised PXU for having the first fleet of EV school buses.

In addition to this, she talked with our students about organizing a youth engagement at UN Climate Action Summit, bringing young people (ages 14-30) from across the world to talk about climate change issues. She encouraged our Sustainability Officers and teenagers in general to call their representatives and talk about their concerns related to sustainability or any other issues pertaining to their community.

The students were able to ask questions of Councilwoman Ansari and when asked what one should study if they want to have a career in sustainability, she replied that there are ways to get involved in sustainability in any field. She discussed how she majored in international relations, but said she knew doctors, computer engineers, etc. who found ways to advocate for and engineer better sustainable practices.

We are very proud of our Sustainability Officers for their desire to make this world a better, safer place. Thank you for representing Phoenix Union in an incredible way, Sustainability Officers!

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Upward and Onward CitySkate Night

Looking for a fun opportunity for your family? Our Phoenix Union Upward and Onward program is hosting a night at CityScape's CitySkate in Downtown! A portion of the profits generated will be donated to the Upward and Onward program.

The event is on December 22nd from 5pm to 9pm. Come support our incredible Upward and Onward students and have some fun in the process!

Carl Hayden JROTC visit GCU

On Saturday December 11th, 8 Cadets (Juan Torres, Dantel Rodriguez, Irvin Penuelas, Luis Sanchez, Prometheus Mitchell, Ciara Lopez, Jose Tapia, and Geraldmy Sauza), SFC Ellison and 1SG Heldt from the Carl Hayden JROTC program spent an exciting morning participating in a campus tour at Grand Canyon University (GCU).

They toured a classroom, a lecture hall, a dorm room, a campus apartment, the library, the Esports facility, and the bowling alley among other key attractions. The Cadets were hosted by GCU Reserve Officer’s Training Corps (ROTC).

The Carl Hayden Cadets and the GCU ROTC Cadets discussed college life, college academics, ROTC scholarships, and the requirements to become a commissioned officer in the US Army. The GCU ROTC Cadets spoke about their individual backgrounds and what brought them to GCU. Finally, the Carl Hayden Cadets were given some key insights into what life as a Cadet at GCU is like as well as all of the benefits of being enrolled in GCU ROTC.

Great job planning for your futures, Carl Hayden JROTC!

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Bioscience High School: A+ School and Named One of Best Public Schools in AZ

Bioscience High School was recently given another A+ grade and named one of the Best Public Schools in Arizona by Kyma, an Arizona news group.

We are so proud of their accomplishments!

Click the button below to see all of the schools who made the Best Public Schools in Arizona list.

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Michael Buster Creates History Podcast "Forgotten Wars"

Michael Buster, a world history teacher at North High School is in 9th year of teaching. From Spring 2020 to Summer 2021, he researched, wrote & produced a history podcast called Forgotten Wars. The first season focuses on wars that tore through South Africa, and introduces imperialism.

He was interviewed a few months ago on a much bigger history podcast called History Unplugged, one of the top 10 most downloaded history podcasts. The episode where he was interviewed finally aired on most podcast providers. Here is the link to the interview on Apple Podcasts, and the link to his interview on Google Podcasts.

He also has a free history teacher resource on his website. His resource provides links to dozens of history podcasts and hundreds of their episodes covering different topics that social studies teachers have to teach on.

Great job on your podcast endeavor, Mr. Buster!

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Camelback Esports Make it to Semifinals

Our Camelback Esports team made it to the semifinals and competed against Brophy (Picture of team above). They did not win this tournament, but we know that they will keep trying and improving. We are so proud of them for making it to the semifinals and trying their absolute best.

Thank you for representing Phoenix Union, Camelback Esports!

PXU Cake Decorating Contest Winners

Our PXU Commercial Culinary Arts programs had Cake Decorating contest where individuals across the district were able to vote for their favorite cake. We have our winners (Pictured above)!

1st place: Camelback High School Candy Cane Cake

2nd place: Cesar Chavez High School German Chocolate Cake

3rd place: Cesar Chavez High School Cherry on Top Cake

We are so proud of everyone for participating and making some amazing cakes. Congrats to our winners!

Trevor Browne Helping Those in Need Club

Trevor Browne's Helping Those In Need Club members made and gave out mugs to Trevor Browne staff on Monday, December 6 as a thank you for their love and support during the first semester. (Pictures above)

We are proud of these students for being so compassionate and caring, and for their kind gesture towards Trevor Browne's amazing teachers.

Thank you so much, Helping Those In Need Club!

8 Staff Members Complete Commercial Drivers License (CDL) Training

We had 8 staff members go through training to get their Commercial Drivers License (CDL) to support our student transportation needs. They will test for their CDL in January. This program is unique to PXU. We offer training to current employees to help them provide much needed services for our district in their downtime.

Thank you to the 8 individuals who stepped up and will take the CDL test in January!

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ElevateEdAZ is an initiative of the Greater Phoenix Chamber Foundation focused on aligning classes and curriculum with workforce needs, creating opportunities for students to apply academics through work-based learning, and increasing student exposure to career pathways. ElevateEdAZ is designed as a model for Arizona schools to better integrate high wage, high demand, high skill career pathways into the K-12 education system. With College and Career Coaches already embedded at the Academies at South Mountain, Metro Tech High School, and Phoenix Coding Academy, ElevateEdAZ looks forward to providing many impactful experiences to students and educators this coming school year.

We encourage you to share with your networks and encourage students to seek out the resources that ElevateEdAZ provides!

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Employee Wellness Support: Beware the Holiday Blues

Our PXU Wellness Team put together some information about avoiding Holiday Blues this Holiday season. Please don't hesitate to utilize the resources they provide if you are in need.

Do you or a PXU Employee you know need any support? PXU has Health and Wellness Clinicians on staff to support our staff with difficult times. If you or a colleague are in need of emotional or mental health support, please click the link below to be directed to a form for support. A Staff Health and Wellness Specialist will respond to you within 24 hours (Monday thru Friday).

Click here to be redirected to the Employee Support Form

Stay in touch with us!

We love hearing from you! If you have good news to share with the District, email Vanessa Herb at vherb@phoenixunion.orgwith your good news. Follow us on social media as well to stay updated on all the great things we have happening across the District!