PXU Newsletter November 2023
Happy Native American Heritage Month!
We are proud to celebrate and honor our Indigenous students and staff this month through various events and initiatives across the District. Are you hosting a Native American Heritage Month event? Let us know! We would love to highlight it on District social media.
Stay tuned on PXU's social media accounts for Native American Heritage Month content.
PXU Academic Decathlon Students Need YOUR Help!
We are thrilled to announce that Maryvale High School will host the PXU ACADEC Scrimmage from November 15th through 18th, and we are calling upon our dedicated district employees for your support. This event is a wonderful opportunity to showcase the extraordinary talents of our PXU students, and your involvement is essential in ensuring its success.
Academic Decathlon (ACADEC) inspires and celebrates academic excellence, encourages students to excel in a diverse range of subjects, fosters critical thinking and communication skills, promotes teamwork, and opens doors to scholarship opportunities. It instills a passion for learning and equips students with valuable skills, preparing them for success in higher education and beyond.
ACADEC competitions are only as smooth as the support they receive, and we are currently halfway to our goal of recruiting volunteers. Your participation can make a significant impact, and we are excited to offer an incentive for your valuable time and effort. By volunteering at the PXU ACADEC Scrimmage, you will earn professional development hours.
The most significant needs for volunteer assistance are in the areas of Speech, Interview, and Essay. No prior experience is required, and training will be provided.
Here are the details for the volunteer opportunities:
Date: Wednesday, November 15, 2023
Time: 5:00pm - 8:00pm
Dinner and refreshments will be provided.
Date: Friday, November 17, 2023
Time: 5:00pm - 8:30pm
Dinner and refreshments will be provided.
Date: Friday, November 17, 2023
Time: 5:00pm - 8:30pm
Dinner and refreshments will be provided.
Date: Saturday, November 18, 2023
Time: 8:00am - 12:00pm
Lunch and refreshments will be provided.
Super Quiz Proctor:
Date: Saturday, November 18, 2023
Time: 1:00pm - 3:00pm
Lunch and refreshments will be provided.
To sign up for any of these events and earn your professional development hours, please click HERE. We also encourage you to share this volunteer opportunity with your colleagues, families and friends .
If you have any questions or need further information, please don't hesitate to contact Assistant Principal for Learning, Rene Martinez, at email@example.com.
To learn more about Academic Decathlon in Arizona, including competition schedules, resources, and how to get involved, you can visit the official Arizona Academic Decathlon website HERE. This website provides comprehensive information on the program and volunteer information with training modules. It's a valuable resource for anyone interested in Academic Decathlon in the state of Arizona.
Thank you for your continued support, and we look forward to your participation in making the PXU ACADEC Scrimmage a resounding success.
PXU United Way Campaign
Phoenix Union is excited to announce the kickoff of our 2023 Valley of the Sun United Way Employee Giving Campaign. Your support for the United Way provides vital resources that directly impact our community. This year, our campaign will run until Friday, December 1, 2023.
Your contribution to the United Way helps create a community where every child, family, and individual is healthy, safe, and has opportunities to succeed in life. Please take a moment to watch the above video from Superintendent Andrade providing context for the campaign and visit www.PXU.org/UnitedWay to donate today.
As you choose which donation option best serves you, remember that you can also direct your donation to the Phoenix Union Foundation for Education. The Foundation provides over $100,000 in scholarships each year for PXU graduates, as well as tens of thousands of dollars for educator mini-grants. To direct your donation to the Phoenix Union Foundation for Education, follow the steps listed under “Click here to direct your gift.” We will also send paper packets to your campuses soon if you prefer that method.
PXU Turkey Drive
The annual PXU Turkey Drive is back! Donate a turkey for a family in need or drop off a $25 grocery store gift card to support a family this holiday season. See the above graphic for more details. You have until November 20th to positively impact a family this season!
EXPO 2023 was a HUGE success thanks to the hard work from each and every one of our schools. We are so proud of all our students who were involved as well, from running booths to performing, they did an incredible job representing our schools. We had over 1500 people stop by Phoenix College to see everything we offer.
PXU Magazine 2023
This year's PXU Magazine is now available virtually! This year, we showcased every school as a whole, highlighting programs, academics, clubs, sports, and more from every school. We hope you enjoy and learn about everything offered across the district. Visit PXU.org/Magazine or click the button below to view this year's PXU Magazine.
Camelback Boys Cross Country Qualifies for State for First Time in 10 Years
For the first time in 10 years, the Camelback Boys Cross Country qualified as a team for state!
Coach Navakuku says, "Out of the PXU schools that competed as teams, we placed in the top spot. Unfortunately we didn’t get any PRs for this race but everyone ran very close to their fastest times. Really this race was for them to celebrate their accomplishment - which was qualifying as a team for state. That was their goal from the beginning of the season."
Camelback Cross Country is led by two seniors, Aron Kiflu (fastest on the team) and Yomar Vega Borquez (team captain). They earned the points needed to score in a good spot by two returning runners, junior Moises Bautista Alvarado and sophomore Samuel Mortensen. They were rounded out by two hardworking freshmen, Emmanuel Vega Gonzalez and Adriano Arguello-Vengochea.
We are very proud of Camelback Cross Country! Congrats on the good season!
Brueklyn Curley Wins Statewide Essay Contest
Brueklyn Curley, Senior at Maryvale, won the statewide essay contest for Honoring America's Veterans. As the winner of the essay contest, she was awarded $250 and will ride in a float in the Veteran's Day Parade.
Congratulations, Brueklyn! Click the button below to read her essay:
Trevor G. Browne's Academies Launch Partnership with ASU Global Sports Institute
Trevor G. Browne’s Academies have launched a partnership cohort with ASU’s Global Sports Institute. Their sophomores are representing each of the four academies as they learn to collaborate, identify, and create ideas that will push project-based learning to the next level. On Friday, October 20, 2023, their cohort went to ASU and met with a panel of assistant athletic directors to help guide their focus of learning in the field of sports. They asked questions, worked in small groups, and even had the chance to listen to an amazing guest speaker. In addition, our students were able to ask questions regarding what it takes to become employed at ASU, how to get an internship, and different pathways available to reach their dream job. This collaboration is only the start of what amazing opportunities await between ASU Global Sports Institute and Trevor G. Browne Academy students.
Click the button below to see an article about their visit and about this partnership:
Linda Abril Rising Melodies Fall Concert
We would like to officially invite you to Linda Abril Rising Melodies Music Club's Fall Concert. Join them at Linda Abril on November 16 from 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM in their Multi-Purpose Room.
All PXU students, staff, and community are welcome to attend and support these talented students.
We hope you can attend!
Linda Abril Students Help Those in Need
On November 3, volunteers from Linda Abril put together care packages for homeless individuals. They all chose to help nurse Ms. Piccioli during their free time. The supplies were purchased through funds awarded by Donors Choose.
We are so proud of Linda Abril for their kindness and service.
Wilson College Prep Listed on 2023 AP Honor Roll Recognition
Wilson College Prep earned AP Honor Roll Recognition recently and is among 30% of eligible schools in the entire country to receive this recognition. We are so proud of them for their accomplishment and for preparing students for college, career, and life.
Phoenix Coding Academy Hosts Eclipse Viewing Party
On Saturday, October 14 Phoenix Coding Academy hosted an Eclipse Viewing Party for students, staff, and community members. Over 50 people were present to observe the annular solar eclipse through certified eclipse viewing glasses. In addition to the astronomical phenomenon, there were science activities, games, music, and food. The event was hosted by Coding teacher Dr. Emily Bogusch with support from the National Honor Society, Student Government, and the Girls Ambassador’s Club.
What a fun opportunity!
Carl Hayden Hosts PXU Academic Decathlon Student Clinic
Carl Hayden hosted the PXU Academic Decathlon Student Clinic recently. This event brought together eight different campuses from across the district for a day of learning and community building for academic decathlon students in preparation for the PXU Academic Decathlon Scrimmage this month.
The student clinic covered activities such as students improvising classic soundtracks from science fiction films using Kazoos (think Cantina Band from Star wars, Space Odyssey, Inception, etc.), to a showcase of computer history equipment that was put on and facilitated by former Hayden computer science teacher and Amazon's 2020 Future Engineer Teacher of the Year recipient, Ms. Jill Jones.
Keep up the incredible work, Carl Hayden Community!
North High School Hosts Biannual Blood Drive
On November 1, North High School hosted their biannual blood drive. Over the past 4 years, they have worked with Vitalant to help meet the needs of Valley blood banks who are in critical need of blood and plasma. Their students, staff, and teachers have the opportunity to give generously while students are able to serve the community in a humanitarian way. National Honor Society at North manages the blood drive by organizing the event, running promotional and logistics as the club coordinates with donors and Vitalant to successfully recruit volunteers and help the drive collect donations. Every drop of blood donated saves hundreds of lives.
We are very proud of North for their life-saving donations!
South Holds Awards Ceremony for First Quarter Accomplishments
South does an incredible job of recognizing the accomplishments of the students in their Academies. Late last month, they held an awards ceremony to celebrate their amazing students for what they achieved during the first quarter.
Way to go, South!
PXU GSA's March in Phoenix Pride Parade
Recently, PXU had LGBTQ+ students and allies from across the district march in the Phoenix Pride Parade. The parade theme was “United Against Hate” and our students represented PXU's core values. This is the first time PXU had students from multiple campuses across the district marching and they hope to have an even bigger group next year to show their pride!
Raevonta Hill Featured by AZPreps365
Raevonta Hill, Junior at Trevor G. Browne, was recently featured by AZPreps365. They dive into his sportsmanship and his background, and discuss his future plans.
We are proud of you, Raevonta! Click the button below to view the article about him.
PXU BSU and ME.Ch.A Students Participate in Future Leaders Townhall
On November 3, PXU students from BSU and MEChA participated in the Future Leaders Town Hall. The Town Hall focused on equity, with the topic "Equity for All Arizonans."
Alhambra High School won 12 suite tickets for being the first school to register. Bostrom also had students passionately participate.
We are proud of our students for using their voices and making their mark in our community.
Chavez Choir Performs at Arizona State Fair
On October 27, all five Cesar Chavez Choirs (Women's Choir, Men's Ensemble, Advanced Choir, Glee Show Choir, and Chavez Choristers), along with a few soloists, attended the Arizona State Fair to perform on the Community Stage.
We are proud of them for representing Phoenix Union in our community!
Maryvale Touring Guitar Performs at Arizona Creative Excellence Awards
Maryvale Touring Guitar ensemble performed at the annual Arizona Creative Excellence Award ceremony on October 19th at the Madison Center for the Arts. They performed for 45 minutes prior to the awards ceremony which was hosted by Governor Katie Hobbs. The students personally met with Governor Hobbs backstage after their performance.
What an incredible opportunity! Congratulations, Maryvale Touring Guitar!
Betty Fairfax AVID and Key Club Roadside Cleanup
On October 28, Betty Fairfax AVID and Key Club participated in a monthly roadside cleanup on 59th Ave from Baseline to Dobbins. All staff, students, and community groups are welcome to join them on the last Saturday of each month for their cleanup.
Betty Fairfax Participates in Special Kids' Day
The Betty Fairfax Key Club also participated in the 50th Annual Kiwanis Special Kids' Day. The Key Club Officers worked the registration tables and the club members were present supporting and making memories.
Great job, Fairfax!
Carl Hayden Good News
Carl Hayden has been busy this past month making a difference and being present in their community.
First, on October 25, around 60 students, staff and community partners came together to create a sense of belonging and connection by cleaning up their street. Community clean-up events not only contribute to a cleaner and more attractive space but also foster a sense of responsibility, teamwork, and pride among high school students. They can be a great way for students to give back and learn about the importance of community engagement.
Next, on November 3, they held an academic assembly with the theme Performances of Our World, Celebrating diversity through music and dance. This assembly gave students an opportunity to celebrate their cultural heritage and learn about and appreciate the diversity around them. MEChA and the Multicultural Committee aim to foster inclusivity and understanding within the school and the broader community.
Finally, Carl Hayden held their own Land Acknowledgement ceremony, being the first campus to officially display the District Land Acknowledgement statement at their school.
We are so proud of the accomplishments of Carl Hayden students and staff!
Chavez Drumline Performs at Team 24's Draft Night Fundraiser Gala
The Cesar Chavez Drumline recently led 3TV's Darrell Cunningham from the Darrell Show into the Team 24 Draft Night Fundraiser Gala to kick off the event.
We are very proud of them for showing up and showing out in our community!
Metro Tech Hosts International Professors
Teaching Media and Information Literacy (MIL) in English for Academic Purposes (EAP) is an exchange program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Office of English Language Programs through the English Access Microscholarship Program. The program is administered by FHI 360 and hosted by Arizona State University. 25 professors from Southeast Asia (Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Brunei, Myanmar, Philippines, Indonesia, Singapore, and Malaysia) visited Metro Tech High School where they observed classrooms, talked with staff and students, and learned about the unique opportunities available to students.
What an amazing opportunity!
Carl Hayden's M.E.Ch.A Folklorico de Falcons Performs at AZ Science Center
Carl Hayden Folklorico de Falcons had the honor to perform at the AZ Science Center during the annual “Celebration of AZ’s Public Schools" recently.
We are proud of them for representing Hayden and PXU!
Betty Fairfax Choir Earns Superior with Distinction at Fall Choral Festival
On October 25, the Betty Fairfax Choir received a Superior with Distinction, the highest possible rating, at the Arizona Choral Educators High School Fall Choral Festival.
We are so proud of these talented students! Congratulations!
Maryvale Freshmen Nationally Recognized
Maryvale Freshmen participated in a poetry challenge in partnership with Creative Communications for their Spring 2023 poetry contest. So many students were recognized and published that Creative Communications named Maryvale one of its National Poetic Achievement Honor Schools. Congratulations to English teachers Camela Kalman and Holly Purtell for inspiring students to become PUBLISHED PANTHERS!
Camelback Drawing & Painting Students Submit Artwork to City of Phoenix Contest
Congratulations to the Drawing and Painting students at Camelback High School who submitted their artwork to the City of Phoenix's Paint Phoenix Purple Teen Art Contest. Their artwork helps raise awareness about domestic violence in our community and world. We are so proud to announce that several students won prizes and recognition for their incredible artwork.
Monique Davis, 11th grade, won first place & a $300 prize for her piece titled "End the Silence."
Joshua Escamilla, 12th grade, won second place & a $200 prize for his piece titled, "Helpless."
Both of these pieces are now a part of the City of Phoenix's permanent art collection.
Marlene Hernandez Contreras, 10th grade, received an honorable mention for her piece titled, "Stop Domestic Abuse."
Teagan Myers, 9th grade, received an honorable mention for her piece titled, "You are Not Alone."
Congrats to them!
Chavez Mini College Fair
Chavez hosted its first Mini College Fair on 10/16/23. Representatives from colleges coming from the CTCL circuit (Colleges That Change Lives) visited Chavez to speak to their aspiring 11th and 12th graders. Students from ARCH, Chavez and their sister micro-schools, Montessori and GTA, attended and represented PXU well.
Because of the positive turnout and interactions, the recruiters would like to make this an annual event. Special thanks to Mr. Kibler, Mr. Navarro and the counseling team, the maintenance team and the security team for helping to make the event successful.
What an amazing event! We are very proud.
Fairfax Attends Parent Meeting at Paseo Pointe
Last month, Fairfax continued to build and strengthen relationships with Laveen Elementary School District, Paseo Ponte specifically. They attended a parent meeting to discuss creating a Pathway to continue their Dual Language program. They also shared information and benefits for dual enrollment and IB, speaking to about 20 families. In the above photo is Paseo Pointe admin, teacher, Fairfax students, teachers, admin, and FHC.
Bostrom Students Prepare for the Future
Bostrom recently took a field trip over to Grand Canyon University to consider their college options and learn about what GCU offers. We are proud of them for being proactive about their futures.
Central Students Travel to NAU
On September 29th, 45 Central High School Students traveled up to Flagstaff to explore NAU and all it has to offer. They enjoyed the fresh mountain air, took a tour of the campus, learned about admissions and scholarships, chased down the food delivery bots, and ate at the all you can eat Hot Spot. They had a great time! A big thank you to their chaperones Ms. Kalman, Ms. Ferrer, Mr. Nielsen, Ms. Guzman and Mr. Dodge’s office for providing transportation.
Dr. Monica Laurenco Awarded Follett School Librarian of the Year
During the Arizona Library Association (AZLA) October conference, the Camelback Librarian Dr. Monica Lourenco was awarded the Follett School Librarian of the year. This award is given to an individual who serves as a model for implementing the American Association of School Librarians (AASL) National Standards. Congratulations!
Visual and Performing Arts Upcoming Events
PXU Visual and Performing Arts has so many events coming up! Mark your calendars:
01/12/24 – 01/13/24 – Greater Phoenix Music (Band/Perc)
01/19/24 – 01/20/24 – Greater Phoenix Strings (Orchestra/Guitar)
03/25/24 – PXU Piano Festival
To stay in the loop with all things PXU Visual and Performing Arts, visit PXU.org/VAPA.
JROTC Good News
We have great news coming from PXU JROTC this month!
First, the Maryvale JROTC Adventure Team and the Cesar Chavez JROTC Adventure Team tied for First Place in the State Championship Adventure Team Competition held at Trevor G. Browne HS on Saturday October 21st. Trevor Browne came in second overall while Flowing Wells took third.
Twelve schools competed in September in the woods near Flagstaff in the first phase which comprised of Leadership Reaction Course, Land Navigation, Rope Bridge, Physical Fitness and Recovery Operations. The second phase consisted of physical fitness events consisting of push-ups, sit-ups, plank, sprint relay and distance run. Cadets made some great memories as they learned teamwork, determination and the value of physical fitness.
Next, the JROTC Drill Team did an amazing job at the American Legion Post #41 John McCain Drill Invitational-2023! This drill event kicks off their 2023-24 drill competition season, and their Cadets placed 3rd overall (top Army team), winning a prize of $1,000! The drill meet is made possible by all the hard-working volunteer Veterans and friends of AL Post #41. COL (R-Air Force) Loui Olivas is the main reason this drill meet is such a success. His dedication to the community and JROTC Cadets is unmatched. Their Cadets get an opportunity to interact with great Americans from Post #41, who epitomizes the meaning of service to Country and community.
Lastly, Cesar Chavez JROTC hosted the annual Carver Mountain Marksmanship Competition on October 27 and 28 at Cesar Chavez. Sixteen JROTC programs from around the valley participated. Cesar Chavez JROTC came in 5th place.
We are so proud of our PXU JROTC students for their hard work and dedication to all they do.
Phoenix Union Foundation for Education Scholarship Application Now Open
The Phoenix Union Foundation for Education's annual scholarship application is now open!
The Foundation awards over $100,000 per year in student scholarships dedicated to PXU graduates. Please take a moment to share this link (https://foundation4education.org/what-we-do/scholarships/) with all 2024 graduates so they can apply for their share of this incredible support.
The application closes on January 19, 2024. All students graduating in May 2024 from a PXU school who attend a post-secondary school (university, community college, or accredited trade school in Arizona) in the Fall of 2024 and Spring of 2025 are eligible to apply for these scholarships.
Thank you for sharing with our 2024 graduates, and best of luck to our scholars!
Strive for Less Than Five
As you know, at the beginning of the year PXU launched our Strive for Less than Five campaign encouraging our students to have less than five absences each semester. We also launched the Strive For Five campaign at Phoenix Digital Academy, to promote online class engagement five hours, five days a week each quarter. Since the launch of both campaigns, we have seen amazing things happening at each campus. Both students and parents/guardians have received a variety of information about our attendance expectations and new initiatives. Keep up the good work!
You can find many attendance tips, tools, and resources on the Attendance Works website: https://www.attendanceworks.org/.
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).
Recently, ElevateEdAZ has been hard at work providing amazing real-world opportunities for our students across the district. On October 20, a group of female students interested in STEM took a tour, participated in hands on activities and were a part of a panel discussion with APS female engineers and staff. On October 26, students attended a job shadow at APS Ocotillo Power Plant. Electrical wiring and engineering students took a tour of the plant and were a part of a panel discussion with current APS rotational engineers. Finally, on November 1, students from across the district participated in Arizona Construction Career Days, a huge construction fair with activities and booths from construction companies across the state.
We are grateful to ElevateEdAZ for their continued partnership and support of our students and their futures. See below for more information about ElevateEdAZ.
We encourage you to share with your networks and encourage students to seek out the resources that ElevateEdAZ provides!