Get out your pencil and paper and take note of some of the latest news from the Deer Valley Unified School District (DVUSD).
DVUSD Spelling Bee Champion Captures Local and Regional Titles
Eighth grade Highland Lakes School student Jacob Sajan continues to spell his way to victory. Sajan clinched the District Spelling Bee champion title by spelling the word “quinary.” The win was extra sweet for him and his family as he earned the title seven years to the day that his older brother was crowned DVUSD’s Spelling Bee Champion.
Jacob and the other top DVUSD spellers went on to compete against 40 other students at the Regional Spelling Bee competition, taking on students from Cave Creek, Fountain Hills, Paradise Valley, and Scottsdale school districts, as well as private, charter, and home school students within the region. At the regional spelling bee event, Jacob spelled the word ‘martinet’ leading to his victory. He competed in the state spelling bee on March 19. Unfortunately, he did not win, but he shares that he had been working toward his goal of making it to the state competition for years and it “feels really great to finally achieve it!”
DVUSD Named Best Employer
“Forbes Magazine” recently named DVUSD one of America’s Best Midsize Employers. DVUSD is the highest ranked Pre-K-12 district in the entire country to receive this distinction. Previously, “Forbes” had recognized DVUSD as one of the best places to work in Arizona. America’s Best Employers 2022 were identified in an independent survey taken by approximately 60,000 American employees working for companies with more than 1,000 workers in the United States. In total, 1,000 employers were recognized across 25 different industry sectors.
Extraordinary DVUSD Teachers of the Year
Each year, the Deer Valley Education Foundation holds an extensive nomination, application, and interview process to identify the DVUSD Teachers and Rookies of the Year. The foundation has never selected more than two Rookies of the Year, however, for the 2020-2021 year, there were six extraordinary Rookie of the Year teachers who completed their first year of teaching in 2021 and 11 DVUSD Teachers of the Year who were recognized during recent governing board meetings.
Rookies of the Year
• Lauren Fultz, Desert Sage Elementary School
• Christine Hallman, Sunrise Elementary School
• Courtney Leman, Park Meadows Elementary School
• Tait Moline, Barry Goldwater High School
• Olivia Willis, Las Brisas Elementary School
• April Woodward, Greenbrier Elementary School
Teachers of the Year
• Diane Allen, Village Meadows Elementary School
• Kathleen Bartolomey, West Wing School
• Ryan Donovan, Boulder Creek High School
• Chelsea Harman, Terramar Academy of the Arts
• Jaime Hansen, Canyon Spring STEM Academy
• Lorin Herrington, Esperanza Elementary School
• Kristi L. Kroeger, Diamond Canyon School
• Bradley Land, Union Park School
• Debbie Moore, Mountain Ridge High School
• Phil Nichols, Las Brisas Elementary School
• Kimberly Williams, Stetson Hills Schools
Congratulations to all the extraordinary DVUSD teachers who were honored!