AAEE This Is Us Webinar Series
Canyons School District; Sandy, UT
On a brisk, clear day on Nov. 6, 2007, residents in the southeast corner of the Salt Lake Valley headed to the polls to vote in an election unlike any other. On that day, their votes made history. For the first time in Utah in nearly 100 years, a new school district was on its way.
Canyons District began independent operations on July 1, 2009, and we have kept the revolutionary vision of those voters at the center of all we do. With a laser-like focus on helping every one of our students become college- and career-ready, the District has been breaking barriers and raising the bar.
As administrators, teachers, and employees of the District, we understand the success of our students begins with our own responsibility to strive for a similar rigor in our administrative operations as in our academic programs. In addition to receiving awards for budget excellence in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2016, the District successfully campaigned for a $250 million bond to build and renovate schools. As a result of our sterling financial track record, Canyons District has received the highest possible bond rating from Moody’s Investors Service. We also actively involve members of the community with volunteer programs, and partner with civic and business leaders to elevate our students’ educational experience.
The symbols of Canyons District are three majestic peaks that rise above our namesake. Yes, the peaks represent the magnificence of the mountains that stand tall above our schools, athletic fields and playgrounds, but they also represent the obstacles that may face us, and our students, and our resolve to rise above them. Here, we present an overview of Canyons' accomplishments, with an invitation to engage with us on our continued exciting journey to new heights in education.
Canyons District is committed to recruiting and retaining the best and brightest teachers and education support professionals, and is willing to invest in them. Since its inception, the District has given employees some kind of compensation increase, a cost-of-living or step increase, or both — and in 2017, the Board of Education approved boosting CSD's starting-teacher salary by more than $5,000 while also providing salary hikes for mid-career and veteran educators. The new teaching salary schedule brings the starting salary for a new teacher to $40,500. In addition, the new single-lane schedule provides an opportunity for educators to make continuous positive impacts to their lifetime earnings. The pay raise was welcome news for CSD recruiters Jo Jolley and Sally Sansom who criss-cross the country to find top talent to fill CSD classrooms. Teacher recruitment season is serious business, and with a nationwide teacher shortage, the stakes are higher today than ever before, says Sansom. Even so, Canyons has managed to attract the nation's best; 38 percent of our teachers come from outside Utah. Some are drawn by the state’s natural beauty; how many metropolitan areas are within driving distance of eight ski resorts and five national parks? Others know that because this District was created less than a decade ago by a vote of the people, we enjoy uncommon levels of community support. Perhaps it’s our size — big enough to have outstanding resources and top talent, but small enough to have to rely on each other to do our best work. Or maybe it’s the fact that as the rest of the world chases the next big reform idea, we’ve been unflagging in our focus on preparing students for the rigors of college and careers. Take a moment to see what we have to offer you at this stage in your career, and learn why #CSDistheplacetobe.