July 2020 Newsletter

CUSD Indigenous Education Program 2020-2021

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A Message From Us at Indigenous Ed:

Ya'at'eeh (Hello) Indigenous Ed. Community,

The current state of the world presents numerous challenges felt by all of us in the Chandler Unified School District. These turbulent times pose an unprecedented level of uncertainty, trauma, and change that directly or indirectly affects families, students, and staff in CUSD. Our promise is always to be an advocate for Indigenous learners of all ages, abilities, gender & sexual identities, and cultures. Historically, some of the most significant laws governing civil rights have been achieved through protest. While we do not condone crime, we are intolerant of systemic prejudice and outright hateful acts towards people who deserve an equal presence in our world. We're proud of and inspired by our CUSD Indigenous Ed. community and alumni who, peacefully & with compassion, stand for constructive change in society.

Though it’s impossible to predict every element in the trajectory of the 20-21 school year, we will pull through because of our collective resiliency. The Indigenous Ed. Program continues to accept new students into our program and endeavors to support students as best as we can. We are back in the office, practicing COVID-19 safety measures, and look forward to connecting with you this upcoming year. Stay safe, well, and continue to reach out to Indigenous Ed.

A n n o u n c e m e n t s

2020-2021 Funding Requests:

We are not accepting funding request applications until the anticipated start of school- August 5, 2020. There will be a limited window of time we will be accepting requests for the Fall 2020 semester; we will keep you posted with updates. For questions, contact Tia. If you don't receive a response to an email or phone call within 24 hours, please follow up.

Indigenous Parent Committee Meetings:

Given the changes in the school year calendar and variation in preference for in-person or online only instruction, our next and future IPC meetings are to be determined. Please stay tuned!

Operation Back to School

Chandler's Operation Back to School event took place on Saturday, July 18. If your student did not receive a backpack and you are in need of supplies, please reach out to us. Due to COVID-19 safety measures, we are limited in our means of distribution so there will be delays in receiving supplies prior to the start of school.

Thank you in advance for your patience and cooperation.

Gila River Indian Community Update

For all inquiries regarding GRIC Advisors, please contact Shelly Aday. Andrew Garcia and Trina Hart are out of the office indefinitely, so Shelly Aday is the best person to contact.

Note: All of our contact information is listed at the end of each newsletter.

Laptops + Calculators

For the students and families currently in possession of a laptop or graphing calculator from Indigenous Ed., please contact us or anticipate a phone call or email to arrange a return or extension to borrow the device. Please do not attempt to return devices in-person yet, since we must schedule an appropriate time and method. It is still your student's responsibility to take care of the technology per the rules outlined in the contract.

If you would like to check out a laptop or calculator from CUSD Indigenous Ed. for the 2020-2021 year, contact us so we can put you on our list. We are working with CUSD to help distribute equipment safely.

We Moved!

CUSD Federal Programs has moved to the Instructional Resource Center: 500 W Galveston St, Chandler, AZ 85225. Our new phone numbers are at the end of this newsletter and posted on our website. If you've reached out to Indigenous Ed. or any of the Federal Programs and haven't heard back within 24 hours, please follow up via email or phone call.

Creative Native Call for Art

Creative Native is a call for art that supports young Indigenous artists ages 5-24 years old by providing them an opportunity to receive national recognition, funding for art supplies, and award of $200. An artist between ages 15-24 will also be recognized as the grand prize winner and have their art featured on the cover CNAY’s 2020 State of Native Youth report. The cover artist will be flown to Washington, D.C. to participate in the report release event in November pending CNAY’s current operating status amid COVID-19. View more info at their website here.

Submissions are due at 11:59 PM EST August 26, 2020.

Contact Us

Indigenous Engagement Specialist -

Tia Gramzinski

(480) 224-3739


Gila River Advisor - Shelly Aday



Director of Federal Programs - Monica Romero

(480) 224-3743


Administrative Assistant - Diana Moreno

(480) 224-3741