KMSB "Fox-11 Forum," Sunday, 11/6/11, 7:30 AM & KTTU "In Focus," Sunday, 11/13/11, 10:30 AM

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By Bryce Potter By Bryce Potter

Host Bob Lee interviews John Pedicone, Ph.D., Supt., Tucson Unified School District. Pedicone is completing his first year as head of Arizona’s second-largest school district.

Peddicone says there were a number of issues that needed attention when he took Over January 2.  He says the department of curriculum and instruction was reinstated to better address organizational flow and function.  He says a TUSD instructional model has been implemented which will be taught to every teacher and administrator in the District.  He said it will benefit teachers and lead to increased student achievement.  He says the central focus must be on student achievement and student accountability.  

Peddicone says the on-going “debate” over the Mexican-American studies program has been a distraction.  The District, he says, is awaiting a decision from the State School Supt. as to whether the District is in compliance with a recent State law passed regarding such special programs.  He also says legal decisions are still pending regarding the 1977 desegregation order under which the District has been operating.  

Pedicone says the recent grade of “C” placed on TUSD by the State Board of Education as to the District’s student achievement and performance is an indication that the District must work harder this year in helping students in all its schools succeed.  He says the focus will be on intervention programs from grades 6-8 to ensure that every student will graduate in 4 years or less and have as many options as are available once they graduate.