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Trusted local news leader for Prescott area communities since 1882
2:56 PM Tue, Aug. 21st

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Nanci Hutson

Stories by Nanci

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VA leader promised improvement, rating goes up

In two months, the local VA has earned a one-star elevation for its 85-bed capacity nursing home on the main campus, a promised improvement the medical director says speaks to the staff’s determination to provide the very best care to the most vulnerable veterans in northern Arizona.

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Prescott High School students taking a second year Japanese language course

About 20 learning to speak Japanese

With a blend of poise and humor, Prescott High School sophomore Teagan McPherson this week shared with a lively class of some 20 students a video presentation about what she did over the summer break —

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Sydney Seeley becomes PUSD’s Student Council board representative

Student rep’s connection to new leadership role is in the genes

Sydney Seeley is no stranger to Prescott Unified School District Governing Board meetings.

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#RedForEd success requires finding long-term education funding stream

Out of the #RedForEd grassroots coalition has come a resolve to generate more than platitudes for teachers.

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#RedForEd a sleeping giant — the movement now focused on long-term funding solutions

The bright red T-shirts are now folded in a chest of drawers. The banners are hidden inside garages. Bumpers stickers still adorn hundreds of cars, but sightings tend to be more sporadic.

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Do I want to live my best life? How will I achieve it?

A year ago, Faith opted to enroll in a diabetes prevention program at the Prescott YMCA.

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Humboldt schools see mixed results in AZMerit

Results should be viewed as more than a score; educators say it’s a tool to measure growth

Area educators are clear children aren’t numbers, and numbers don’t tell a students’ academic story.

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BASIS tops them all in AZMerit testing

The AZMerit score results in language arts and math for 14 tri-city area charter schools showed a strong performance for most of the schools, with BASIS Prescott earning the highest scores that reflected progress from the prior year’s scores.

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Groom Creek veteran witnessed official signing of Japanese surrender in 1945

Seventy-three years ago today, Aug. 14, 1945, Groom Creek resident Chuck Webster was a United States Navy sailor aboard ship in Tokyo Bay, a witness to the end of World War II with Japan’s announcement of its official surrender.

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AZMerit scores are in, with mixed results

Results should be viewed as more than a score; educators see it as a tool to measure growth

Area educators are clear children aren’t numbers, and numbers don’t tell a students’ academic story.

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Toastmasters ‘life-affirming’ approach conquers stage fright, develops confident leaders

If you would prefer to run naked down the street rather than stand still behind a podium in front of strange faces — and your job or college major demand you do so — there are folks who gather just after dawn every Tuesday who will quell your fears so you don’t become the latest social media spectacle.

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Prescott High teacher hopes to translate Fulbright scholarship into global awareness for students

In Prescott High School French teacher Cathleen Cherry’s classroom, students experience a high-energy educator who does a lot more than teach a language — she offers a taste of world culture and diversity meant to tantalize them into thinking of a life beyond their day-to-day existence.

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2 school districts - Prescott and Chino Valley - and Yavapai College to have board elections Nov. 6

All other districts' seats uncontested

In the tri-city region, only Prescott Unified School District and Chino Valley Unified School District will have contested school board races, or three candidates for two, four-year seats this year.

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New PHS school resource officer for 2018-19

On the first day of school, Prescott Police Department Officer David Holmes was standing in the middle of the crosswalk just beyond the entrance to Prescott High School to greet folks and make sure everybody was headed to the place where they needed to go.

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Serving the homeless with safety, dignity

Four days a week, Doretta Kearney navigates her scooter over to the Coalition for Compassion and Justice (CCJ) emergency shelter on Madison Avenue in Prescott where she does the noon lunch dishes.

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Yavapai Big Brothers Big Sisters cited as top state charity by national business website

When it comes to giving to a charity, a national business website is clear one cannot go wrong when making a donation to Yavapai Big Brothers Big Sisters — the nonprofit earned top billing in Arizona.

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Northpoint charter high school in Prescott adds a 50-student middle school

The 50 teenagers who on Monday will enter Northpoint Expeditionary Learning Academy’s newest addition in Prescott — a seventh and eighth grade middle school — will be greeted by a gurgling rock fountain, soothing music and four energetic educators eager to embrace each one’s individuality.

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Granite Peak UU congregation’s interim pastor’s life in transition key to her welcoming ministry

Granite Peak Unitarian Universalist interim pastor Terry Cummings is no stranger to transition.

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‘Excitement in the air’ on first day of school

PUSD first day of school goes off without a hitch; three new principals and two assistants in the mix

At 7:30 a.m., with the first period bell still a half hour away, Prescott High School was abuzz.

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BEWARE: School buses are on the road as children return to school

Prescott Unified School District is back in session. Humbolt Unified and Chino Valley Unified will follow suit on Monday, Aug. 6.

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La Tierra Community School expands with opening of a combined-grade middle school

Road construction in front of the La Tierra Community School on North Virginia Avenue seemed to be no bother for the 18 faculty and staff busy with preparations to welcome 134 students Thursday morning — 25 will be in a small house next door transformed into an expanded, two-grade middle school.

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PUSD faculty and staff kick off 2018-19 year pep rally style

What does a Hula Hoop, a blind fold and a balloon have to do with the opening day of school?

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Granite Peak Unitarian Universalist welcomes interim pastor

One of the first things Granite Peak Unitarian Universalist congregants and guests may notice on Sunday morning is that the woman in the pulpit is not from around here — her British accent will give her away.

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Prescott Chamber of Commerce offers support to teachers at opening pep rally

In a sign of solidarity with the Prescott Unified School District on Tuesday morning, some 40 Prescott Chamber of Commerce business and nonprofit agencies set up booths all around the Prescott High gymnasium before the faculty and staff welcome back pep rally.

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Potential buyer of PUSD’s former South Granite district offices has until Aug. 30 to make a deal

With the start of a new school year three days away, Prescott Unified School District leaders have their fingers crossed that the sale of the former district offices is about to be final at the end of August.

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New school year brings excitement for ‘fresh start’

Challenges ahead in 2018-19 for students, teachers and administrators

Summer idyll is about to come to a close for students and education faculty and staff across the region — but for many it signals a positive vibe that fuels their passion for a fresh start and new opportunities.

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Supplemental school supplies can cost upward of $150 with backpacks

In Arizona, state law requires public schools to provide students with the supplies needed for academic success.

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Green to retire as leader of West Yavapai Guidance Clinic

Mental health agency leader focused 35-year career on promoting hope for those on road to recovery

On the first day of summer in 2017, West Yavapai Guidance Clinic Executive Director Larry Green was a happy man — the agency he shepherded for 12 years reached a milestone.

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PUSD earns voluntary district-wide accreditation for embracing motto of “Every Child, Every Day”

Accreditation confirms PUSD motto

Prescott Unified School District (PUSD) earned bragging rights this summer with its national, all-district accreditation that applauded a school system-wide belief in its motto, “Every Child, Every Day.”

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Main runway repair to get underway next week at airport

Commercial air travel to commence Aug. 29

A $6 million repair on Prescott Municipal Airport’s main runway will get underway next week — closing it down for all daytime traffic until Aug. 22.

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A movement to end homelessness in Prescott

Elissa LaFonte can attest to the power of moving from homelessness into a home of her own.

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$15,000 is foundation for skilled tradesmen project

Charles Matheus knows a number of the teenage boys mentored through his agency are not college bound, nor are they motivated by the almighty dollar when it comes to finding a profession.

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Friendly Pines Camp director cherishes role in preserving eight-decade legacy of summer fun

Kevin Nissen isn’t above trying his aim at archery, lobbing a tennis ball or swinging from a jungle gym.

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VA leadership and staff departures prompt skepticism over agency’s mission and future

Top VA leaders leave positions

More than a dozen top VA leaders and supervisors, including two of the four top-tier administrators, will be departing the 1,100-employee agency in the next month, adding to a 12.6 percent turnover rate between May and July.

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Public education hot topic at gubernatorial forum

Three Democratic candidates attend forum in Prescott Valley

Glassford Hill Middle School Assistant Principal Beth Denman was one of just over 100 people who attended an AZ Schools Now gubernatorial political forum attended by only the three Democratic candidates — Kelly Fryer, Steve Farley and David Garcia.

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Departing Prescott school board member, veteran educator’s legacy one of championing the best for children

Erickson believes in education

Vivacious, creative and inquisitive, veteran Prescott Unified School District Governing Board member Maureen Erickson is a firm believer the recipe for all children’s success correlates with a menu of choices.

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Embry-Riddle dean’s first year a whirlwind of programming to assure student success

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University College of Arts and Sciences Dean Kathleen “Kathy” Lustyk admits to a whirlwind year, one she sees as the kick-off to an academic marathon rather than a winded sprint.

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Veterans to keep legal addresses, mail services in Prescott

Local VA postal service to alter personnel, but service to remain the same

For as long as anyone can remember, the local VA campus has had its own U.S. Postal Service branch office in the basement of Building 15, home to the theater/auditorium and other office space.

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'Hannah's Heart' story and play inspires heart-themed quilt and raffle to benefit Prescott charities

Hannah Meadows may be a fictional 10-year-old girl growing up in Depression-era Prescott.

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PUSD hopes to finalize office sale

Prescott Unified School District leaders hope they are close to the finish line on the sale of the former district office on South Granite Street — it is the last of three properties the community three years ago opted to sell.

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‘Right place at the right time’ to save a life

Granville resident and retired nurse Barbara Jezior spent almost a half century in obstetrics and gynecology care in her home state of Illinois, with some time in labor and delivery.

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Film offers glimpse into hope for veterans seeking to balance life after service

Trek guides two men to ‘Almost Sunrise’

On a lonely, two-lane road in the middle of nowhere USA, two Iraq War veterans walk in silence; majestic views surround them as they breathe and walk, each footstep a move toward inner peace.

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‘Fire Pal’ Rick Chase honored for longtime commitment to teaching children how to stay safe

Rick Chase knows what it is to chase a dream, chase adventure and chase a fire.

CAFMA approves $25.5M budget for next year

The Central Arizona Fire and Medical Authority District Board gave final approval to a $25.5 million budget for next year, which is about a 10 percent increase over last year.

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PUSD superintendent earns high marks

Joe Howard earns raise, for collaborative leadership style

Prescott Unified School District Superintendent Joe Howard is heading into his third year as this city’s top educator — and he is just as enthusiastic as ever about living the motto, “Every Child, Every Day.”

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New head of JTED looks to bring students, programs, community together

All over the Phoenix Valley and across San Antonio, Texas, Bill Stiteler can point with pride to commercial and high-end residential properties he helped build.

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Rental prices hurt homeless voucher program

They answered a call to duty. Then life happened. And some lost their way.

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Community volunteer goes the extra mile for veterans

A true patriot, Patsy Ray has a heart for all the men and women of this nation’s Armed Forces who sacrificed their lives to thwart seen, and unseen, enemies for the sake of loved ones and strangers.

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Prescott educators to see significant pay hikes in next school year

Prescott Unified School District teachers will get an 11 percent raise this school year.

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Prescott VA nursing home earns lowest rating in nation

The local VA medical center director declared on Tuesday afternoon that care for the most vulnerable, and difficult to treat veterans is today, and will remain, a top priority for the facility that just earned the lowest rating in the nation for its 85-bed nursing home, known as the Community Living Center (CLC).