PXU Newsletter September 23, 2022

Hispanic Heritage Month Website Video

Happy Hispanic Heritage Month!

Phoenix Union is proud to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 to October 15. We encourage you to let us know about any events that your school plans to hold in celebration of this month.

Linda Abril brought School Yard Raps to their campus for their first ever on-campus concert as a part of their Hispanic Heritage Month kickoff. School Yard Raps shares knowledge about Hispanic and Black History through raps and catchy songs. Here are some photos of that event:

Big picture

Dr. Gestson Named Valley Leadership 73rd Man of the Year

PXU is excited to congratulate our Superintendent Dr. Chad Gestson for being named the 73rd Valley Leadership Man of the Year. He will be honored in November at a reception hosted by Valley Leadership. Congratulations, Dr. Gestson!

Click the button below to see more about Dr. Gestson's award:

Big picture

PXU Governing Board Student Safety Committee Meeting on September 29

The next PXU Governing Board Student Safety Committee is on Thursday, September 29 from 5:30 PM to 8:00 PM. This meeting is open to the public. For more information on the meeting, visit PXU.org/SafetyCommittee.
Big picture

Dialogue Sessions District-Wide

PXU has had a series of discussions regarding prioritized efforts to best support the success of PXU students, parents & guardians, and staff that identify in the Black, African American, African diaspora. Thank you to everyone who has participated so far. The last session is tomorrow, September 24, from 10 AM to 11:30 AM at Carl Hayden.

For any questions, please call 602-764-1517 or email ChiefStrategyOfficer@phoenixunion.org.

Big picture

PXU Employee Wellness Support

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

Big picture

Vaccine Clinics Through Employee Wellness

Our Employee Wellness team will also be holding vaccine clinics at our school sites! Vaccines offered include Flu, Shingles, Pneumonia, Hepatitis B, TDAP, and COVID-19. For more information, reach out to Jennifer Sundling at jsundling@phoenixunion.org or fill out the form below:
Big picture

Carl Hayden's Math Department Full of Former Falcons

The Falcon Pride within the Carl Hayden Math Department (pictured above) is on a different level than for most. Out of the 15 teachers within the department, 8 of them are Carl Hayden alumni!

Miguel Larios (not pictured), Carol Rodriguez, Yadira Garcia Apodaca, Miguel Ontiveros, Anayeli Diaz, Jesse Hoover, Pamela Flores, and Jose Bocobachi are all Carl Hayden graduates and proud to teach at the school where they were once taught. When asked about it, Jesse Hoover, Instructional Leader says, "I think I speak for all of us when I say we love our school and we are all SUPER proud to be former and current Falcons."

We are so proud to have dedicated teachers who love their school enough to return to it years later.

Big picture

Franklin's Community Fair A Huge Success

Franklin held their free Community Fair on Saturday, September 17 and it was very well attended. The event featured food, games, health screenings, and many more services. We are proud of the Franklin community for bringing together so many people for fun and resources.
Big picture

Leonard Doerfler Passes AIAAA Certified Athletic Administrator Exam

PXU is excited to congratulate Leonard Doerfler (pictured above) from Cesar Chavez High School for passing the exam to become a Certified Athletic Administrator at the Arizona Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association (AIAAA) annual conference.

Mr. Doerfler is also a board member with the AIAAA. Congratulations, Mr. Doerfler! Click the button below to see the requirements for passing this exam:

Big picture

North Senior Brian Munoz: Diamondbacks RBI MVP

North High School Senior Brian Munoz (pictured above) was honored as the Most Valuable Player on the Diamondbacks RBI team. RBI is a summer league sponsored by various pro baseball teams. He spent the summer competing against other major league youth teams, and his Diamondbacks team came in 3rd Place in the RBI World Series in August! Congrats to ALL of the North students on the team - also Angel Valenzuela, Raul Robles, and Joshua Berber.
Big picture

Alhambra JROTC's Annual Boot Camp

This past week, Alhambra JROTC Cadets (pictured above) participated in their annual “Boot Camp”. This wildly popular training event is anticipated with excitement by returning cadets and feared by incoming first year cadets. Cadet leaders use this day to focus on teamwork and improving communication, leadership and physical fitness. The Boot Camp is supported by the Arizona National Guard and active duty recruiters from the Army, Marines and Navy.
Big picture

Bostrom Math Department Dream Team

This year, Bostrom needed two math teachers. James Johnson, who worked at Trevor Browne for 22 years, came out of retirement to take over Geometry and serves as Bostrom's PLC Geometry 1-2 team leader. Johnathon Eddy, who came to Bostrom from Desiderata, has taken on the role of Bostrom's PLC Algebra 1-2 team leader. Both math instructors have added much to Bostrom's mathematics department, creating a Dream Team of Math Teachers. They are looking forward to a wonderful 2022-2023 school year.
Big picture

Betty Fairfax Celebrates Large School Achievement Award

This year, Betty Fairfax earned the Large School Achievement Award and they recently had a celebration for their achievement. We are so proud of you, Stampede! Keep up the great work.
Big picture

Dr. Monica Lourenco to Represent Camelback at Conference and Webinar

This October, Camelback Librarian Dr. Monica Lourenco (pictured above), will be representing Camelback at the AzLA Annual Conference in Prescott, and at the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) webinar.

Great job, Dr. Lourenco!

Big picture

Save the Date: PXU Marching Exposition

The Phoenix Union Visual and Performing Arts Department invites you to their annual Marching Exposition on November 2, 2022. This is the only night to catch every single PXU Marching Band all in one place. We hope you can come out and support!

For all the upcoming Visual and Performing Arts events, we encourage you to visit their webpage by clicking the button below:

Big picture

Metro Tech Hosts PXU Community Outreach Transition Team (COTT)

The Phoenix Union Community Outreach Transition Team (COTT) had a successful meeting hosted by Metro Tech recently. Thank you to all the Metro Tech staff that presented.

Their next meeting will be on October 24th. Way to go, PXU COTT!

Big picture

Camelback to Receive 25 Free Trees

The Arizona Sustainability Alliance selected Camelback High School as a location to receive 25 brand new trees for free. We are looking forward to seeing the new greenery around Camelback. Congratulations, Spartans!
Big picture

Alhambra Celebrates New Staff Lounge Courtesy of Fiesta Bowl Charities

Alhambra's staff lounge received an upgrade thanks to Fiesta Bowl Charities! Alhambra recently celebrated their brand new staff lounge alongside representatives from Fiesta Bowl Charities with a ribbon cutting. Congratulations, Alhambra!

Metro Tech Floral Hosts Successful Grand Opening

Metro Tech Floral recently hosted their Grand Opening for the 2022-2023 school year and it was very widely attended. They partnered with Metro Tech Culinary to make the event a huge success. This year, their plan is to make the shop an entire community effort, partnering with other areas to put on events and create a huge community.

Great job, Metro Tech Floral!

Power 98.3 Visits Bostrom During Lunchtime

Recently, the Bostrom Bulldogs were visited by Power 98.3 during lunchtime for music, activities, and fun. We hope you had a blast, Bostrom! See above for some pictures of the excitement.
Big picture

PXU Staff Book Club

PXU Libraries invites PXU staff to join the Staff Book Club! We invite you to join the PXU Librarians in reading and discussing a different book every quarter on Teams. If you want to sign up and join their discussions, visit https://bit.ly/pxubookclub2022
Big picture

PXU Libraries: Readers Start Year Off Strong

Congratulations to all PXU readers for starting the year strong! Across all our schools in the district we had the following amount of checked out books during the month of August:

  • 8,735 print books

  • 976 digital books (eBooks and eAudiobooks)

  • 4,014 database searches
Big picture

NetTutor Now Available to PXU Students

PXU is excited to offer NetTutor's 24/7 tutoring services to our students free of charge! We encourage you to share this resource with your students. Students can access NetTutor by visiting PXU.org/NetTutor.
Big picture

AZFamily Silver Apple Award Nominations Now Open

The AZFamily Silver Apple Award nominations are now open! We encourage you to nominate your colleagues for this award. Winners will be featured on 3TV and receive a $1000 prize. Here is some information about the award as well as the nomination form and official rules:

Nomination Form:


Official Rules


Landing page with past stories


Big picture


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!

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.org with your good news. Follow us on social media as well to stay updated on all the great things we have happening across the District!