Duncan to visit Arizona on “strong start, bright future” bus tour

Department Officials to Support the Bus Tour at Events in Phoenix, Scottsdale, Marana and Bisbee

As part of the U.S. Department of Education’s “Strong Start, Bright Future,” back-to-school bus tour, Secretary Arne Duncan will hold events in Tucson and Tempe, Ariz. on Wednesday, Sept. 11.

Joined by U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, Secretary Duncan will start the day at Tucson Unified School District Bus Depot at 7 a.m., to discuss how school bus drivers are on the front lines of school safety efforts as students begin and end their day. Then Secretaries Duncan and Foxx will go on a school bus ride-along to Dodge Traditional Magnet School, where they will visit with students and teachers, and participate in a service project to highlight the importance of citizenship and strengthening communities at 8 a.m. There will be press availability when the secretaries arrive at the school.

Next, Duncan will visit Sunnyside High School at 10:30 a.m. to see how technology is being used to empower educators and engage students. He will talk about the administration’s ConnectED initiative to ensure all schools have access to high-speed Internet in the classroom.

Along with Secretary Duncan’s visit to Tucson, Acting Assistant Secretary Michael Yudin will join sixteen district wellness coordinators, retired University of Arizona (UA) Men’s Basketball Head Coach Lute Olson, UA Women’s Basketball Head Coach Niya Butts and UA mascots Wilbur and Wilma T Wildcat at Marana Middle School (MMS) in Marana, Ariz. Yudin will highlight the First Lady’s Let’s Move! Active Schools program to bring physical activity back to America’s schools. MMS Principal Kristin Reidy will issue a district-wide “60 minutes for 60 days” physical activity challenge and lead students, staff and parents in a dance-off, relay races and various sporting activities.

Later in the afternoon, Duncan will attend a community town hall at Arizona State University at 4:30 p.m., where he will discuss college affordability and how to increase the Hispanic community’s educational opportunities—ultimately strengthening our nation’s education system.

Finally, Duncan will visit the “Healing Field” Memorial in Tempe, Ariz., at 7 p.m. to honor victims and first-responders of the Sept. 11 attacks. There will be press availability after each public event.

Also in Arizona on Wednesday, other department officials will travel the state in support of the “Strong Start, Bright Future” back-to-school bus tour.

In Bisbee, Ariz., Acting Assistant Deputy Secretary for Innovation and Improvement Nadya Dabby will visit a 2012 Investing in Innovation (i3) Validation grantee implementation site. The National Writing Project—the grantee—is working in Bisbee School District, as well as over 40 districts across the country, to improve the delivery of professional development.