Local School District Bringing The Community Together

Florence Unified School Districts second gather of the Coffee With The Community provided a great turnout.

“I am always impressed with the students in our area.  They are advanced and leaving high school more prepared for their careers than ever before.  Getting a birds eye view of the different programs that FUSD offers to their students has opened my eyes to the incredible success that is coming from our area.  These are our kids and our schools who are setting the bar high and reaching outstanding accomplishments.  It is critical that developers, youth leaders, and special interest groups take a good look at what these students are made of, they are our future.” said Chairman Mike Goodman on the FUSD event.

Supervisor Goodman was also on hand to speak and to go over area developments while Sheriff Lamb spoke about specific programs that are in place to support the kids in the area.

During Mr. Goodman’s presentation he touched upon several points and projects. He spoke about the area has now evolved into an urban area and is no longer a rural area.

The utility was also a point of conversation as to what the county is limited in terms of what can be done. Monitoring hydrogen sulfide gases is the extent of what the county is authorized to do. As an elected official alerting the ACC regarding problems. But to put things in places as far as codes and mandating, that requires a form of taxing district or incorporation. But those are things that need to be looked at and discussed and have open and honest conversations with the community as a whole.

Moving away from the topic of the utility, San Tan Valley is the highest income earners in the county. Yet, 80% of the workforce leaves the area and Mr Goodman stressed that that needs to change and there are things that the county is trying to do to solve that and to bring more jobs to the area such as finding areas that have rail access and connectivity.

About $900 million a year in spending power is spent outside of San Tan Valley.

In regards to support for children in the area the county, FUSD, and Paladin Sports are working together to bring a park to the area with ball fields and basketball courts. A grant from the Arizona Diamondbacks will be applied for to help move this program and partnership forward. Additional finding and support will be needed to make the park a reality but it is a big step forward to getting a park in the area.

Sheriff Mark Lamb spoke for a bit regarding the diversion program to give kids a second chance to avoid carrying an arrest with them for the rest of their life which can hamper their future greatly.

The program involves four classes that covers planning and goal setting, the dangers of sexting and social media, drugs and alcohol awareness, and a career night that gets kids in front of jobs and career recruiters.

The purpose isn’t to make the kids feel bad, the classes are designed to make the kids better and help point them in a better path. The program also involves community service which involves labor and interaction with law enforcement.

The kids, after graduating from the program are welcome to come back and to stay involved. The program is available for kids aged 10 to 17.

The next Coffee With The Community Event will take place in August.