by Craig H. McFarland, Mayor, City of Casa Grande
New families looking to relocate to a new community will typically Google search the local education ratings. They look for the best rated school in which to place their children. These ratings typically use state test scores, diversity, and income level when establishing the final score. Ratings, however, don’t tell the entire story and may be prejudiced toward higher income areas.
Our education system in Casa Grande is much better than the ratings and reputation (which is, in part, driven by the ratings). I have visited every elementary, middle and high school, including charter schools, in the City of Casa Grande. I can tell you we have a lot of good schools, good students, and good teachers.
Education and workforce development is critical for our children, community and future growth!
Here are just a few accolades/accomplishments that we should all be talking about:
Casa Grande Elementary School District
- 7,000+ Fantastic Children
- 900 Dedicated Employees
- 44 District Awards/Recognition (2000 – 2017)
- 13 Rodel Leadership Recipients
- Seven – A+ School Awards from the Arizona Education Foundation
- Parental Approval Ratings of equal to or greater than 96% for 14 years in a row
Casa Grande Union High School District
- 4,500+ Fantastic Students
- 450 Dedicated Employees
- 1,800+ Students enrolled in 12 different Career Technical Education (CTE) programs (FFA,DECA,STEM)
- FFA named AZ Outstanding Chapter 3 times in the last 10 years
- 100% Industry Credential Licensing to all CTE program completers
- 98% Graduation rate for all CTE Students
ASU Preparatory Academy
- 100+ Dedicated Students
- 100% Graduation Rate
- 100% of Seniors were admitted to post-secondary institutions or military service
- Prepares students using the Internationally acclaimed Cambridge Curriculum
Other local Private and Charter Schools:
- St. Anthony’s of Padua Catholic School (K-8)
- Legacy Traditional School (K-8)
- Grande Innovations Academy School (K-8)
- PPEP Tec High School
- Mission Heights Preparatory High School
Additionally, our middle schools have implemented a program by Scott Shickler and Jeff Waller called “The 7 Mindsets”. Our environment, the world in which we live and work, is a mirror of our attitudes, expectations and Mindsets. This program, implemented in our middle schools teaches students:
- Everything is Possible
- Passion First
- We Are Connected
- 100% Accountable
- Attitude of Gratitude
- Live to Give
- The Time is Now
- Casa Grande has lots of choices . . . from public school districts to private to public charters. All have excellent curriculum and teaching staff. As my parents used to tell me . . . “you get out what you put in”!
- So, the next time someone asks, “how are your schools in Casa Grande?” you can answer them with a positive “GREAT!” And we have lots of choices to fit all needs!