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Location RAC: District, Last Updated on 1/19/2018
Welcome to Adobe GoLive 6
Welcome to Adobe GoLive 6
Welcome to 2018!

January 17, 2018--It is always exciting to celebrate a new year. This is a time when many of us set goals, make New Year resolutions, or simply look forward to something better. Safford Schools also has many exciting happenings on the horizon and would like to share these with you.

You may be aware that we are striving to become TBSDIA (The Best School District In Arizona). We realize that we cannot achieve that goal on our own - it will take all of us: students, parents, community, and schools working together to become the best. We know that the road may be difficult, but anything worth doing right takes effort. We invite you to join us and be part of the change: get involved in school events, attend concerts, sporting events, and parent-teacher conferences; talk to teachers and staff; ask students what they are doing to help make a difference; and finally be Proud to be a BULLDOG! If we all strive to be the best we can be and help make a positive change we will see great things take place. Thank YOU for being part of our TEAM!

District and Campus Updates

There is a lot going on with improvements for many of our school district facilities. Here is an update of what is happening:

Bond Improvements:

Center for the ARTS:
Thanks to voters in the Safford School District boundaries, the Bond passed and one of the items on the list was an addition of two classrooms, changing rooms, and storage to the back of the CFA. Groundbreaking will begin soon with a scheduled completion date of August 2018.

Safford High School:
Work on both the boys’ and girls’ locker rooms is almost complete. As a result of the hailstorm and flooding of October 2016, it was discovered that the roof above the boys’ and girls’ locker rooms had significant issues and was deemed not structurally sound. The roofing repairs were taken care of by the Arizona School Facilities Board, and inside remodeling is being paid for from Bond money. Once again, thank you to our voters for their support of the Bond! Anticipated completion date is Mid-February.

Security Cameras:
As one of the items mentioned in the Bond, security cameras are currently being installed. These cameras will be on all campuses.

New Busses and Shuttles:
Also from Bond funds SUSD has been able to purchase new and slightly used busses as well as new shuttles. The bus fleet is now in compliance with updated guidelines.

Another item listed on the Bond was to improve technology for students and teachers. As a result, each classroom now has a Promethean Display which allows for improved instruction and student interaction. If you haven’t seen these displays in action we invite you to check with your school and see a demonstration!

School Facilities Board (SFB) Update:

The Arizona School Facilities Board is a state run agency that assists school districts with deficiencies and assists schools with older facilities to be in compliance with standards and regulations set by the State. Below are some projects they are assisting SUSD with:

Approval has been given by the Arizona School Facilities Board (SFB) to begin evaluation and execution of a district wide drainage plan. Within the next two months earthwork will be conducted and proper drainage will be implemented.

School Improvements:
In process by the SFB is approval to repaint three of our schools.
Also, an assessment has been approved for the evaluation of the entire Dorothy Stinson Campus and reports are forthcoming.

Electrical improvements:
Approval has been granted from SFB to make electrical improvements at Safford Middle School.

As you can see, there is a lot happening at Safford Schools. We are doing what we can to make this the best place for our students and staff so we can provide the best possible education for our young people! Thank you for your help and support!

Ken VanWinkle

Welcome to Adobe GoLive 6


Image: Declaration of SUSD Administration and GRIT Mission Statement
Declaration of SUSD Administration and GRIT Mission Statement

Link to video of Monday's Community Meeting

Image: Governor Doug Ducey Visits Safford High School & Lafe Nelson School!
Governor Doug Ducey Visits Safford High School & Lafe Nelson School!

Governor Doug Ducey visited Safford High School on August 28, 2017 as part of his 3rd Annual Back to School Tour. Governor Ducey's visit kicked off with a schoolwide assembly. Following the assembly, Governor Ducey toured the school's CTE programs, including: Culinary Arts, FFA, and Auto shop. Following his tour, the Governor met with students and staff in Biology and ended his visit by visiting with Link Crew students and Student Council .

The Governor also made a stop at Lafe Nelson Elementary School where he looked at some of the repairs made to the roofing systems, presented Mrs. Treisa Taylor's kindergarten class with a prize for winning the school's weekly "home run" contest, read to Mrs. Higgins' first grade class, and finished up going through the "spirit line" of students giving them high fives as he passed by.



The Safford Unified School District does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion or disability in admission to its programs, services, or activities, in access to them, in treatment of individuals, or in any aspect of their operations. The Safford Unified School District Career and Technical Education department does not discriminate in enrollment or access to any of the programs available.

Career and Technical Programs

Auto Mechanics Marketing
Welding Business Education
Drafting Consumer/Life Management
Technology Food Service

The lack of English language skills shall not be a barrier to admission or participation in the district’s activities and programs. The Safford Unified School District also does not discriminate in its hiring or employment practices.

This notice is provided as required by Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. Questions, complaints, or requests for additional information regarding these laws may be forwarded to the designated compliance coordinator(s).

Mr. AJ Taylor
Title IX and Section 504 Coordinator
Safford Unified School District
734 11th Street
Safford, AZ 85546
(928) 348-7052

(Spanish Version)

Safford Unified School District no discrimina raza, color, nacionalidad, género, edad, religión o incapacidad de admisión a sus programas, servicios, o actividades, en acceso a ellas, en el tratamiento a individuos, o en ningún aspecto de sus operaciones. El departamento de Educatión Técnica y de Carreras de. Safford Unified School District no discrimina en su matriculación o en el acceso a cualquier de sus programas disponibles.

Career and Technical Programs

Auto Mechanics Marketing
Welding Business Education
Drafting Consumer/Life Management
Technology Food Service

La falta de habilidades inglesas para idiomas de hablar no será una barrera a la admisiόn ni la participaciόn en las actividades del distrito y programas. Safford Unified School District tampoco discrimina en sus contratos o practicas de empleados.

Esta noticia es provista y requerida por el Título VI del Acto de Derechos Civiles de 1964, Sección 504 del Acto de Rehabilitación de 1973, Título IX de la Enmienda Eduacativa de 1972, en el Acto de Era de Descriminación de 1975, y el Acto de los Estadounidenses con Habilidades Diferenciadas de 1990. Preguntas, quejas, o para más información con respecto a estas leyes pueden remitir por al coordinador de compliance.

Image: Transportation Policies!
Transportation Policies!

Safford Unified Schools
Transportation Department
1185 S. 14th Avenue
(928) 348-7080
FAX (928) 348-7081


This letter is to remind all parents/guardians of Safford Unified School District students of the changes to the Transportation Policies.

In order for your child to ride a bus to/from school, you must come into the Transportation Office with your child, view a video, and sign all necessary paperwork.

Sign up dates and times are as follows
July 24th thru August 3rd 2017

The Transportation Office
1185 S. 14th Ave.
Monday - Thursday
8:00AM - 4:30PM
For after hour appointments contact transportation at the number below

This new Transportation Policy is in place to help educate everyone on the importance of safety on school buses. At Safford Unified Schools we are striving to create a safe, healthy environment for everyone.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to call the Transportation Office at (928) 348-7080 or (928) 348-7091.

Thank you for your cooperation,
Phillip Nelson
Director of Transportation


Safford Unified School District announced some changes in the calendar beginning with the 2016-17 school year:

Safford High School:
SHS will continue the “Five-Day Modified” schedule for the 2017-18 school year. There will be information sent out with registration information in the current newsletter and on the SHS web page.

Monday through Thursday Schedules will be as follows:
Safford High School: 7:45am - 3:10pm
Safford Middle School: 7:40am - 2:58pm
Ruth Powell School: 8:15am - 2:15pm
Lafe Nelson School: 8:10am - 2:10pm
Dorothy Stinson School: 8:00am - 2:00pm

Safford Middle School, Ruth Powell School, Lafe Nelson School and Dorothy Stinson School will all dismiss early on Fridays to allow for teacher/staff in-service, collaboration meetings, trainings, etc.

Friday dismissal times are as follows:
Safford High School: 11:45am (for those invited or drop-ins)
Safford Middle School: 11:41am
Ruth Powell School: 12:35pm
Lafe Nelson School: 12:30pm
Dorothy Stinson School: 12:20pm
* Please note: The first Friday in August, the first two Fridays in January, 2018, and the last school Friday in May will be full school days. (No early release).

Mt. Graham High School will remain on their existing schedule.


We look forward to a Fantastic 2017-18 School Year!

Image: Thank You for Choosing Us!
Thank You for Choosing Us!

Public schools were and are at the cornerstone of American values and history, and are an investment in strong communities and a strong America. We understand that today’s parents have a choice and we thank the families of our students for choosing Safford School District.

Thanks again!

Ken VanWinkle, Superintendent
And the Super Staff of Safford Schools

Image: Updated 2017-18 School Calendar
Updated 2017-18 School Calendar

The 2017-18 School Calendar was approved by the Governing Board at the February Board meeting.

Dates for Parent/Teacher Conferences for the three K-6 schools have been set for October 20 & 27, 2017 and March 23 through 29, 2018. The calendar has been revised to reflect those dates.

Click here to see the SUSD Calendar.

School events can be viewed on each school's website by clicking on the calendar button once you navigate to each school's website. You can also subscribe to any of the calendars from the calendar page.

SUSD Calendar

Image: Social Media and Cyberbullying
Social Media and Cyberbullying

UPDATED 11/8/17

First, I want to thank the Safford Police Department for their very thorough, professional, and efficient investigation during these very trying and difficult two and a half weeks. We had complete confidence in the Police Department and in those conducting this investigation. There have been things known and discovered that could not be shared until everything was finalized. We, as a school cannot and will not interfere with a police investigation. We also want people to know that we cannot and will not release names of students nor discipline administered to them.

Safford Unified School District would like to express our sincere and heartfelt thanks to the many kind and thoughtful people in this community for support, encouragement, kind words and actions, and FOOD! It means more to us than you will ever know… Thank you!

I would personally like to thank the following people: .
District Level Administration, Safford High School Administration, and School Resource Officer for their tireless efforts, sleepless nights, and love for our students.
The entire staff at Safford High School for being the good people they are and for hanging together.
Safford High School students who reported concerns and gave support.

This has been a very difficult time for many of us who have had our names and our schools blasted on Social Media, particularly Facebook, because we were not giving out information to which some people thought they should have access. It is not easy knowing this kind of stuff is being spread on a “Blast” page, but doing the right thing, even when it may not be popular is still and will always be the right thing.

It is disappointing that some people, including adults, chose to release names of individuals, even going as far as threatening them in an attempt to smear the names of some children. Hateful, accusatory, inflammatory, and just plain mean things were posted or said by people with a blatant disregard of factual information. Many people chose to believe what was posted and then chose to add more fuel to the fire. The use and misuse of social media especially the “Blast” page in the Gila Valley caused panic and disruption in our District. This was wrong, uncalled for, and in some cases, malicious.

Many people write and post things they would never dare say in person. It seems that some people think they are protected and anonymous as they post on social media. It is not so and it does not bring any good! We as a community cannot give in to social pressure and the ugly side of social media; If we do then we must ask ourselves what we are teaching our children. We are living during an interesting time. It seems that hostility and verbal assaults have become acceptable means of problem solving with some people in our communities. We cannot allow this type of behavior to take the place of polite conversation, respect, and kindness.

Sometimes we just need to trust in one another...for some reason, it seems that we as a School District may need to do more to earn the trust of the parents and community and we will continue to work to gain that trust. Our students are our number one priority. We want them to know that and we will continue to do all we can to ensure they know it.

We want all students and parents in our school district to know that verified cases of threats or bullying will result in severe disciplinary consequences from the school and charges will be filed with law enforcement….we will not tolerate threats or bullying in any form! We will likewise take necessary action towards anyone bringing forth untrue or false accusations. The most severe consequences will be administered to protect our students.

We strongly remind and encourage all of us be vigilant, care for each other, and as we have been emphasizing: See Something - Say Something - Do Something!
Please join us as we ALL (schools, students, staff, parents, and community) strive to become: TBSDIA !

Thank you once again to all those who showed confidence and support.

Ken VanWinkle

Image: Welcome To Safford Schools!
Welcome To Safford Schools!

We are happy to have you at Safford Schools! Below is information to help make a smooth transition for your child into a new school.

If you have a student new to the District in Grades K-6, please contact Miss Lesley Huffenberger at the District Office at (928) 348-7025 or Or you may come to the District Office at 734 W. 11th Street between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. to complete the form that will place your child's name on the list for the 2017-18 school year. Students are placed at the school which has the fewest in that grade.

The secretaries at the school assign the teacher according to the fewest number of students in the class. The secretaries also provide parents with information regarding lunches, buses, etc.

When enrolling, students new to the District must bring please bring the following documents with you.

• Original birth certificate (not hospital copy)
• Immunization record.

Additionally, proof of residency by the parent(s) or guardian(s) must be provided in the form of one (1) of the following documents, which bear the parent or legal guardian’s full name and residential address or physical description of the property where the student resides (no P.O. boxes):
• Valid Arizona driver’s license, Arizona identification card
• Valid Arizona motor vehicle registration
• Valid United States passport
• Property deed
• Mortgage documents
• Property tax bill
• Rental agreement or lease (including Section 8 agreement)
• Utility bill (water, electric, gas, cable, phone)
• Bank or credit card statement
• W-2 wage statement
• Payroll stub
• Certificate of tribal enrollment or other identification issued by a recognized
Indian tribe
• Other documentation from a state, tribal, or federal agency (Social Security
Administration, Veterans’ Administration, Arizona Department of Economic
Security, etc.)

The school will provide a form for the parent to sign, requesting records from the previous District.

Three and four-year-olds with special needs may request screening for preschool. For more information please call Mr. Frank Gutierrez at 928-348-7045.

The daily schedule for each school is as follows:

Dorothy Stinson School starts at 8:00 a.m. and ends at 2:00 p.m.

Lafe Nelson School starts at 8:10 a.m. and ends at 2:10 p.m.

Ruth Powell School starts at 8:15 a.m. and ends at 2:15 p.m.

Safford Middle School starts at 7:40 a.m. and ends at 2:58 p.m.

Safford High School starts at 7:30 a.m. and ends at 3:10 p.m.

Mt. Graham High School starts at 8:00 a.m. and ends at 3:00 p.m.

Students in Grades 7-8 will register for school at the Safford Middle School office at 612 11th Street. Please Safford Middle School web page for registration information.

New High School students, Grades 9-12, need to meet with a counselor before enrolling at Safford High School. The principal at our alternative high school, Mt. Graham High School, meets with students prior to enrolling. Please see Safford High School and Mt. Graham High School web pages for registration information.

Students residing outside District boundaries, wishing to attend Safford Schools, must submit an open enrollment application. Applications are available at the District Office or at this website under "Downloads" at the top of the page in the section titled "Enrolling Students." If you have any questions, please contact Miss Lesley Huffenberger (928) 348-7025 or

Image: Improving Communication for Nurses and Parents
Improving Communication for Nurses and Parents

Safford Unified School District (with the exception of RPS) is excited to announce our migration to, a new communication tool for our parents and nurses. With this new tool, nurses can notify parents when their children visit the nurse’s office, and parents can provide the nurse with accurate student medical information. All information is stored securely and is HIPAA and FERPA compliant.

To start this process, WE NEED YOUR HELP! You received an email directly from with a personalized link to complete your child’s record. Please make time to complete the request. If you did not receive an email link, you can log into your PowerSchool Parent Portal and click on the CareDox link in the left-side menu. Or, you can also go to and select “Log In” then “Haven’t Signed Up? Register Here.” If you don’t have computer access, you can sign up by visiting your child’s school office.

The benefits of include:
--Streamlined medical information sharing between parent and nurse.
--Real-time notifications when your child visits the nurse's office.
--Accurate and portable vital information for daily and emergency use.
--Fill out your child's health profile ONCE, and update any changes each year, ensuring it is always up-to-date.
--Notifications when your child’s medicines dispensed at school are low and need refills.
--Peace of mind the school is fully aware of all of your child’s medical conditions.

Safford Unified School District's top priority is student safety and helps us ensure an efficient, streamlined means for coordinating the care of your child.

Image: Consider Teaching for SUSD
Consider Teaching for SUSD

Safford Unified School District provides the following for teachers new to the district:

--Recruitment Stipend
--Mentor Teacher for a Full Year
--Induction Program
--Competitive Salary
--Teacher Incentive Program
--Medical Benefits
--301 Pay-for-Performance
--Collaborative Colleagues

Please consider making SUSD your professional home. Use the link to apply online.

Click here to be redirected to the link mentioned above.

Image: ACT Progress
ACT Progress

ACT Progress Chart.

Arizona Children's Health Survey

The Arizona Department of Health Services has launched the Arizona Children's Health Survey. The survey will identify children's health needs in Graham County ages birth to 17 years old.

Why is it important for you to participate by taking the survey?
The results will help identify what is currently working well for you in your community, related to children’s health. It may also identify areas that need improvement to help families meet their children’s needs in Graham County.

The survey is available online and mobile formats.

It takes 6-10 minutes to finish.

We are asking you to take the survey for each child in your care.
Example: If you are a family with 3 children, then you will take the survey for each child, in order for ADHS to capture age related information.

All information gathered in the survey is confidential and will not be shared. No user name, password or E-mail address is required:


Graham County Home Page -

Click on Arizona Children's Health Survey

then scroll down for access to the survey links in English or Spanish

Thank you for participating in this very important survey

Results of the survey will be available in early 2017 and may be requested from the Office for Children with Special Health Care Needs.

Questions? Please call Graham County Health Department 928-792-5368

Image: Children and Youth Website Launch
Children and Youth Website Launch

The Graham County Health Department would like to introduce you to the new website for parents, youth, caregivers, grandparents, teachers, administrators, counselors, healthcare professionals and everyone who comes in contact with “Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs”. This website is very comprehensive and contains resources for everyone to access. After reviewing the site, there is a questionnaire at the bottom that you can make comments on. We will leave this questionnaire up for a few weeks. Please feel free to comment.

The Arizona Department of Health Services uses the Maternal and Child Health Bureau’s definition of Children with Special Health Care Needs as:

“Children up to age 21, who have or are at risk for a chronic physical, developmental, behavioral, emotional or potentially disabling condition and who also require health and related services of a type or amount beyond that required by children generally.”

Please access the website with the link below or through the Graham County Website.

This website was created and made available from funding provided by State of Arizona Department of Health Services, Healthy People, Healthy Communities, Health in Arizona Policy Initiative.

Laura Rogers
Health Programs Coordinator, Health in Arizona Policy Initiative (HAPI)
Graham County Health Department
820 West Main Street, Safford, AZ 85546
Office: 928-792-5368
FAX: 928-428-8869

Click here to be redirected to the link mentioned above.

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    Safford, AZ 85546
    Phone: 928-348-7000
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