by Catherine Byars

We all have ideas and opinions; they’re like noses, everyone has one. We all want what is best for our children and our schools. So, how do we as human beings, parents and community members start conversations and share these ideas?

In light of the horrific recent school shootings, Governor Ducey felt the need to act quickly on how to prevent this from happening in Arizona. The Vail Parent Network had the honor of being invited to the governor’s office on March 5th to meet with other Arizona parents and community members. We were able to share and discuss what we consider to be the most import needs of our students and schools. It was a listening session for the governor; he took notes and asked us to elaborate on several points. Much of the conversation was on mental health and focusing on more qualified counselors within each school to hone in on behaviors that are being missed. This proactive session also included public safety officials from across Arizona, as well as superintendents from multiple districts.

From left to right: Stacy Winstryg, Linda Feltheim,

On March 19th, Governor Ducey released the Safe Arizona Schools Plan, he stated: “This plan has been shaped by the lessons we’ve learned from past tragedies and by meaningful solutions we’ve heard from Arizonans across the state.” Two of his action plans include investing in mental and behavioral resources at schools and creating a central tip line for reporting school safety concerns. You can read more at

The Vail Parent Network is thankful to Governor Ducey for the opportunity. We applaud his efforts on being proactive and allowing parents and community members to lead the conversation. Being proactive is one of the hallmarks of the Vail Parent Network; work with us to be part of the dialogue because together we can make a change for our student’s future.

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