We are so fortunate to live in a community where so many people and entities in our community graciously support our schools in so many ways. One of our newest partnerships this school year is with the Town of Carefree. Titled Carefree Cares, it was developed after Carefree Mayor, Les Peterson, Carefree Cave Creek Chamber President/CEO, Patty Villeneuve and I attended a Maricopa County Greater Phoenix Chamber meeting of mayors, chamber executives and superintendents. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the ways the cities and towns could support education. Although it was noted at the meeting that the Legislature and the Governor determine state funding for our public school districts, many in the group felt that individual towns and cities could do more on the local level to support our schools.

Mayor Peterson asked about having a quarterly program to recognize and honor staff members to show the town’s appreciation and Carefree Cares was born. Each school quarter, every school identifies a staff member based on exemplary service they have provided to our CCUSD community and schools. The honorees are invited to a Carefree Town Council meeting where each council member reads their nomination accolades and the Mayor presents them with a Carefree Cares pin. At a subsequent CCUSD Governing Board meeting, the honorees are presented to the Governing Board and public where they receive a certificate and a gift card from a community member who prefers to remain anonymous. We are so proud to announce the inaugural honorees of Carefree Cares below. Congratulations to:

Black Mountain Elementary School: Devin Galloway-
Parmeley, teacher

Desert Sun Academy: Megan Linch, teacher

Desert Willow Elementary School: Kristina Pancoast, teacher

Horseshoe Trails Elementary School: Jessie Dizdarevic, teacher

Lone Mountain Elementary School: Sydney Myers- Lenz, administrative assistant

Sonoran Trails Middle School: Don Larson, teacher

Cactus Shadows High School: Jennifer Reisener, teacher

Debbi C. Burdick, Ed.D.