Glendale Union High School District

District welcomes new superintendent
The GUHSD Governing Board has named Brian Capistran as the district’s new superintendent. Capistran previously was the district’s associate superintendent of curriculum and instruction. He replaces Eugene Dudo, who retired at the end of the school year. Capistran began his new position on July 1.

Capistran has been with the Glendale Union High School District his entire professional life. After a successful career as a classroom teacher at various schools— including Sunnyslope High School—he began utilizing his strengths in education and leadership in his various administrative roles. Prior to accepting the position as associate superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction, he served as assistant Superintendent of Student Services, School Safety administrator, principal and assistant principal.

Capistran’s professional preparation includes a Bachelor of Arts in Secondary Education from the University of Arizona and a Master of Arts in Education from the University of Phoenix. He currently is pursuing his Doctorate in Organizational Leadership at Grand Canyon University.

Madison Elementary School District

Two schools now offer IB programs
Madison Meadows Middle School received official notice that it has been authorized as an International Baccalaureate (IB) World School in the Middle Years Programme (PYP).

To become an IB World School offering an IB program, Meadows was evaluated by an external review team to verify that IB practices and program requirements are in place.

The International Baccalaureate programs aim to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. To this end the organization works with schools, governments and international organizations to develop challenging program of international education and rigorous assessment. These programs encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.

Only schools authorized by the IB Organization can offer any of its three academic programs: the Primary Years Programme (PYP), the Middle Years Programme (MYP), or the Diploma Programme (and in addition the IB Career-related Certificate).

To create a K-8 program of study, Madison Simis has been authorized as an IB World School, Primary Years Programme (MYP) School.

Questions can be directed to Susan Doyle, Madison Meadows principal, at or 602-664-7600.

Three new staff join Madison team
Three Madison School District schools will be joined by new administrators this school year.

Madison Park welcomes Maggie Rodriguez, Teacher on Assignment (TOA). Rodriguez has been both a middle school math and language arts teacher. She has a master’s degree in Elementary Education with a specialization in reading instruction and is currently enrolled in the master’s degree program in Educational Leadership at Arizona State University. Rodriguez recently was accepted into the Rodel Foundation’s Aspiring Principal Program and the Kagan Cooperative Learning School Trainer Workshop.
Jennifer Perreault joins the team at Madison Meadows as assistant principal. Perreault had been a K-8 instructional coach in the Laveen Elementary School District for the past eight years. She coordinated and ran the Teacher Assistance Team, which made certain that all student academic needs were met. Prior to that Perreault taught fourth grade for five years. She holds a master’s degree in Educational Leadership from Grand Canyon University and plans to start a doctorate degree in the near future.

Madison Heights has added Amy Rendón as a Teacher on Assignment (TOA). Rendón spent more than 10 years as a classroom teacher and served as a grade level lead for more than seven years. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Multilingual Multicultural Education from Arizona State University, and Master of Arts in Educational Administration from Grand Canyon University.

Watch board meetings live on the Internet
The Madison School District Governing Board will officially start live streaming governing board meetings beginning with the Aug. 18 meeting at 6 p.m. Those interested in watching meetings live or using the archive to view past meetings can access this content at A complete schedule of meetings can be found at

Osborn Elementary School District

Three student dancers attend workshop in NYC
Three Osborn Middle School students will travel to New York City this summer to study with Dance Theatre of Harlem. Ambre Batchan, 13, Dulce Escobar, 14, and Janet Mays, 13, won acceptance by DVD audition from a national pool of more than 1,000 applicants.

All three began their studies as third graders in ballet outreach programming developed in partnership with Osborn School District, and continued to participate, working consistently for the past five to six years in the Ballet Program at Osborn.

Through donations to the Ballet Program for School Children, sponsorships will be provided as needed for the students to attend these three- and four-week residential intensive programs.

Ballet Program for School Children is a nonprofit organized in 2012 to support the continuation and ongoing development of professionally oriented ballet programming, created with the Osborn School District to reach and serve students otherwise unlikely to have opportunity to participate.

The Osborn Ballet Program also is supported by the Osborn Educational Foundation and your AZ tuition tax credit donations to Clarendon School, where the ballet classes take place after school. For more information about making a tax credit donation, call 602-707-2000 or e-mail

Phoenix Union High School District

Teacher receives ‘Heart’ award
Kevin Berlat, an English teacher and the Speech and Debate coach at Central High, has been selected the 2015 Section 7 recipient of the “National High School Heart of the Arts Award” by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS).

The award recognizes individuals who exemplify the ideals of the positive heart of the arts that represent the core mission of education-based activities.

Currently in his 17th year teaching at Central, Berlat is one of the nation’s leaders in speech and debate. He is currently finishing his 10th year as president of the Arizona Speech and Debate Coaches Association (ASDCA), which makes him the longest-serving president in nearly 30 years.

In addition, he serves as chair of the Arizona Interscholastic Association State Speech and Debate Advisory Committee. At the national level, Berlat is in his seventh year of service on the National Speech and Debate Association District Advisory Committee and has served as president.

Berlat’s greatest accomplishments have come in Congressional Debate, for which he organized the first “Boot Camp” in Arizona to prepare for nationals. This model has been replicated across all events in the state, leading to overall success for Arizona schools.

Administrative changes for new school year
Former Metro Tech Principal Kate McDonald replaces LaCresha Williams as principal at South Mountain High School, and Assistant Principal Bryan Reynoso will be interim principal at Metro Tech.

Among other new administrators, Cortney Stewart becomes Camelback’s assistant principal for Registration, promoted from the school’s Professional Development specialist. Brian Guliford was selected as assistant principal for Student Opportunities at Metro Tech, coming to PUHSD from Pendergast Elementary School District.

Washington Elementary School District

Stanton takes helm as WESD superintendent
Paul Stanton, Ed.D., is the Washington Elementary School District’s new superintendent. Stanton replaces Susan J. Cook, Ed.D., who served as superintendent for 10 years and retired at the end of June.

Stanton most recently served five years as superintendent of Humboldt Unified School District in Prescott Valley. Prior to that, he was assistant superintendent for educational services in the Liberty School District in Buckeye and administrator at Diamond Canyon Elementary, Desert Sky Middle and Mirage Elementary Schools in the Deer Valley Unified School District.

Stanton holds a BS in business administration, marketing and finance from Marquette University and masters’ degrees in elementary education and educational administration and supervision and a doctorate in educational administration, from Arizona State University.

During his first year, Stanton hopes to build relationships with the students, parents, staffs and communities. To that end, he plans to support the continuation of established partnerships in the district as well as build new ones.

Private and Charter Schools

Watson joins Bourgade as new assistant principal
Ryan R. Watson is the new assistant principal of curriculum and instruction at Bourgade Catholic High School, as of July 1. Watson graduated from the University of Louisville with a B.A. in biology, and Arizona State University with a M.Ed. in curriculum and instruction.

His appointment follows the retirement of Vicki Kilgarriff, M.A. Ed., who served the Bourgade Catholic community for 14 years.

Watson has worked in the Diocese of Phoenix since 2009, first at St. Agnes, and more recently at St. John Bosco.
Bourgade Catholic High School is located at 4602 N. 31st Ave. For additional information, contact or Joann Siebenman at 602-973-4000, ext. 120.

Grant helps teachers use technology in class
Midtown Primary School, located at 4735 N. 19th Ave., recently received a grant from Verizon to give its teachers training in the use of technology in the classroom.Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math have been known as S.T.E.M. It is generally agreed that in order for the United States to compete with the rest of the world, children need more focused S.T.E.M. education. Recently an “A” for Art was added. It is art in all its forms: physical, cultural, character, etc.

Midtown Primary School supplied all the third and fourth graders with laptops this past school year. The student engagement, enthusiasm, and speed soared in all areas. To keep up with the kids’ progress, the school had to hire a Technology Specialist.

“There was so much collaboration, teamwork, creativity, critical thinking, and problem solving going on—the rooms were buzzing,” said Principal Judy White. “These are skills that can be hard to nurture, yet they are essential to success in life. We are thrilled to embrace S.T.E.A.M.”

Midtown teachers have attended two different S.T.E.A.M./S.T.E.M. Summits in California. They are also scheduled for “Teach Like a Techie” by Staff Development for Educators. White said, “Having money to provide these amazing opportunities is such a treat, thanks to Verizon.”


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