Douglas Unified School District Superintendent Ron Aguallo has announced he will be retiring effective June 30.
The announcement was made official at the DUSD Board meeting Tuesday, Feb. 6 and accepted with regret.
“I move that Mr. Aguallo’s contract be mutually terminated and that his retirement resignation be accepted … within the terms and provisions of his present contract and that this action be taken with regret and this board thanks him for his dedicated and exemplary service,” DUSD board member Ray Borane said in his motion to accept Aguallo’s retirement. “We wish him and his family all the best in the future business endeavors.”
Aguallo proceeded to thank the board for the opportunity to work for the DUSD saying it's been a privilege to work with some great people.
“It has been difficult coming to this decision,” Aguallo stated in a Feb. 5 letter of resignation to the board. “I find myself reflecting on all the exhilarating and at times exhausting occasions that have occurred over the last 30-years I have been in education. … Thank you for allowing me to play a role in developing Douglas Unified.”
Aguallo, who is currently in his third year as superintendent and has one more year remaining on what was the second contract with the DUSD, has stated he is retiring so that he may spend more time with his family and possibly start up a family business.
Board President Mitch Lindemann said the board will meet this next week to discuss plans on how they want to begin a search for a replacement.
In other action at the meeting the board approved a new class schedule for DHS that will begin this next school year. Zero period will still start at 6:30 a.m.; first period at 7:30 a.m. and classes will run until 3:10 p.m. for tutorial. Thursday will be the new early release days and the new block days will be Wednesday and Thursday where classes will be 90 minutes long instead of the 55 they will be on Monday, Tuesday and Friday.
DUSD officials said the schedule change is being made with the goal of increasing student achievement. It increases the instructional minutes and should provide consistency for students that the current schedule does not provide. Students will now meet in all classes four times per week as opposed to two or three per week.
Superintendent Aguallo told the board this new schedule includes structured, set aside times for their pep assemblies in fall, winter and spring,
“That’s embedded in that enrichment period and its not cutting into their instructional time,” he said.
Dr. Andrea Overman told the board while she is aware change is difficult she is seeing this as a win, win schedule.
“Kids need more instructional time,” she said. “I think there will be a transition but I think they will be very happy with what the final product is going to be; I fully support this.”
In other action at the meeting the board approved the second readings for policies dealing with early graduation and graduation exercises and okayed the first readings for policies dealing with retirement of professional staff member; part-time and substitute professional staff employment; retirement of professional staff members and professional/support staff sick leave.
Donations from Walmart and Ray Borane to the RBMS Bicycle Club were approved. The board hired Michelle Yanez to be a teacher at Faras Elementary and Marissa Aguirre as the new DHS girls tennis coach. Seven new substitute teachers were also hired as well as two new food service workers and a special education instructional aide. Martin Ries was hired as a 21st Century teacher at RBMS and five new volunteers were approved as was a student observer from Cochise College.
At the start of the meeting former board president Natalio Sabal was presented with a plaque which honored him for his service not only as president but also with the board.
The Students of the Month and Students on a Roll were also honored. From Faras, they were Milagro Carrillo and Sophia Lobota; Clawson, Dominick Mendoza and Aurialena Garcia; Sarah Marley, Ashanti Ortega and Erik Othon; Stevenson, Ezra Figueroa and Anika Davila; Joe Carlson, Edgardo Enriquez and Yuriel Vallejo; Paul Huber, Debany Galaz and Armando Lopez; Ray Borane, Alejandro Gutierrez and Geoffrey Ball and Douglas High School, Hector Canez, Paulina Guzman, Jazmin Hernandez and Rene Villanueva.
DUSD officials also reported there were 4,137 students enrolled in the district at the end of January and that there will be no school on Feb. 19 due to President’s Day. The next regular board meeting will take place on March 6.