ARIZONA NEWS

Paradise Valley school district superintendent resigns due to threats

Dec 7, 2020, 2:29 PM | Updated: 5:13 pm
(Twitter Photo/@DrJesseWelsh)...
(Twitter Photo/@DrJesseWelsh)
(Twitter Photo/@DrJesseWelsh)

PHOENIX — The Paradise Valley Unified School District Governing Board unanimously accepted the resignation of Superintendent Jesse Welsh during a special meeting on Monday.

Correspondingly, James P. Lee was appointed as the acting superintendent.

Lee previously served as the PVUSD superintendent for 10 years before retiring in 2019, when Welsh took over the role.

“We appreciate Dr. Welsh’s contributions to our PVSchools community and his dedication to meeting the educational needs of all our students,” Governing Board President Anne Greenberg said in a press release.

“We thank him for his service and his support of our extraordinary educators, staff, students, and families.”

Welsh’s resignation comes after both he and his family received threats from people who wish to keep the district open to in-person learning, according to ABC15.

“I would like to express my gratitude for the opportunity and honor that has been afforded to me by the Board to serve the PVSchools community,” Welsh said in the release. “It has been my privilege to work with the caring and talented educators in our district.

“I am proud of the work we have done to protect our students, teachers and families, while providing learning options that meet families’ needs.”

With the district currently having two of three benchmarks in red, all students were switched to remote learning on Nov. 23.

The Arizona Department of Health Services created benchmarks for schools and businesses using three metrics that gauge how widespread the coronavirus is in each county — cases per 100,000 residents, percent positivity for diagnostic testing and percentage of hospital visits for COVID-like illnesses.

The schools benchmarks were designed as guidance for K-12 districts in their decisions about opening levels. Districts, however, have the final say in whether they offer virtual, hybrid or traditional learning formats.

Arizona has seen a surge in coronavirus cases. On Monday, state health officials reported 1,567 cases and zero deaths, bringing the documented totals to 365,843 COVID-19 infections and 6,950 fatalities.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(Pexels photo)...
Associated Press

Teen boy found shot to death in San Tan Valley home

Authorities in Pinal County are investigating the shooting death of a 15-year-old boy.
1 day ago
(AP Photo/Andreea Alexandru)...
Danny Shapiro

Hoffman says ruling against mask mandate bans in Arizona schools ‘right decision’

Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman said a Monday ruling that a law banning face mask mandates in Arizona schools violates the state constitution and can’t go into effect this week as scheduled was the right move for students, parents and administrators.
1 day ago
(ADOT photo)...
KTAR.com

I-17 south of downtown Phoenix back to 3 lanes as bridge project nears completion

The third lane in each direction of Interstate 17 south of downtown Phoenix has reopened after more than a year as a bridge project nears completion.
1 day ago
(Pexels Photo)...
KTAR.com

Valley nonprofit to build affordable housing for seniors with $9.1M federal grant

An Arizona nonprofit will receive $9.1 million in federal funding to develop affordable housing in the West Valley city of Surprise for low-income seniors.
1 day ago
(Facebook Photo/Phoenix Police Department)...
KTAR.com

1 child dead, another critically hurt after being shot at south Phoenix residence

One child is dead and another was in critical condition Monday after being shot at a residence in south Phoenix, police said.
1 day ago
(AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)...
Kevin Stone

Judge strikes down Arizona law banning face mask mandates in schools

An Arizona Superior Court judge ruled that a law banning face mask mandates in schools violates the state constitution and can't go into effect this week as scheduled.
1 day ago
Paradise Valley school district superintendent resigns due to threats