HWUSD consolidates schools to save money, improve instruction; no combination classes this year

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The former Winkelman Elementary School and Leonor Hambly Middle School have been consolidated. The new school name is Leonor Hambly K-8 School.

“Leonor Hamby was the first female administrator in the school district and was a Hispanic role model for many female students pursuing a career in education. It is only fitting that the second female administrator in the district is the new principal of the new Leonor Hambly K-8 School,” said Jeff Gregorich, HWUSD superintendent.

“I am very excited to be the first principal of the new Leonor Hambly K-8 School. I look forward to making it place where all students can learn and reach their dreams. Having graduated from the Hayden-Winkelman School District makes me even more committed to ensure every student the best education possible,” stated Pam Gonzalez.

The K-8 alignment is not a new concept, in fact, many bigger school districts have chosen the K-8 school alignment to improve classroom instruction and streamline curriculum and instructional practices. Perhaps one of the most positive elements of K-8 alignment is student discipline. Keeping the middle school students in a traditional elementary classroom setting limits potential negative exposure to social issues facing high school students today throughout America.

Gregorich also said:“There will be no combination elementary school classrooms this school year. Combination classes are when multi-grade level students share the same teacher and the same classroom. This is sometimes done to improve instruction as well as save dwindling school funding dollars. Fortunately this year, the district enrollment remained steady, which allows the district to avoid the need for combination grade level classrooms.”

“The moving of the middle school students will save enough money to make needed improvements throughout the district. Our district is fortunate to have a staff and community that values education and wants our school district to continue to provide a quality education for all of our students, as it has for the past 78 years,” stated Gregorich.

Staff (1230 Posts)

There are news or informational items frequently written by staff or submitted to the Copper Basin News, San Manuel Miner, Superior Sun, Pinal Nugget or Oracle Towne Crier for inclusion in our print or digital products. These items are not credited with an author.


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