Two Higley High School students have won the prestigious 2020 National Honor Scholars designation – an honor that fewer than 1 percent of high school seniors achieve.

Lindsey Giles and Taryn Trigler are both enrolled in a number of Advanced Placement classes.

Taryn received a perfect score on the ACT and plans to study biomedical engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology. She is also a Presidential Scholar semifinalist. Lindsey, who plays volleyball and is a member of Higley’s student council, plans to pursue a career as a physical therapist. 


Williams Field Council

wins excellence award

Williams Field High School’s Student Council has received a 2020 National Gold Council of Excellence award, which is given to student councils that demonstrate “the highest standards of quality” in operation, projects and activities and that are considered models for similar organizations. 

This is Williams Field Student Council’s fourth consecutive year winning the award.


Higley Kids Club aide Parker Hicks honored

Parker Hicks, an activity assistant in the Higley Unified School District, was named the Arizona Community Education Association Program Line Leader of the Year. 

Hill, who started with the district in May 2019, works with the before- and after-school Kids Care program at Higley’s Sossaman Early Childhood Development Center.

“Parker Hicks is a dedicated, loyal, hardworking staff,” said Emily Hill, Kids Club program leader. “He goes above and beyond every day, coming up with creative crafts, science experiments, and group games. He is extremely flexible and always ready to change things up if needed.”

Hill nominated Hicks for the award.

“He is a one-of-a-kind staff who always incorporates fun into everything he does. He loves the kids and takes the time to get to know every one of them. The kids adore him and always look forward to getting to play with him,” Hill said.

Hicks enjoys his job with Higley’s Community Education Department.

“I love working with kids because not only is it fun, but there is something special about making that special connection with a kid, whether it’s one kid or all of your kids,” Hicks said. 

His favorite activity, he said, is reading stories to the children, specifically “The Book with No Pictures,” by BJ Novak.

“If you don’t know already, ‘The Book with No Pictures’ is a book that practically has you make a fool out of yourself by shouting nonsense words and phrases and other things among that realm. That book was the tool that I used to break out of my shell at Kids Club and ultimately that book is the reason a lot of my kids opened up to me, as well.”

Hicks said interacting with the students in a number of ways builds engagement, which makes his job even better.

“Once you build that relationship with your kids then coming to work and interacting with them becomes all the more engaging and it gets to a point where you don’t really even feel like you’re working anymore.”


Bridges Elementary teacher wins Intel grant

Bridges Elementary fifth-grade teacher Shauna Hamman is one of 44 teachers who will receive a STEAM education grant from Intel this year. The program was set up to celebrate the technology giant’s recipient of 40th anniversary in Arizona.

The company partnered with the Arizona Educational Foundation to support Arizona teachers with 40 grants. More than 400 teachers submitted applications.

Hamman, a 15-year education veteran, plans to use her grant toward a project called, “Sustainable STEAM Challenges.” She will purchase materials needed for students at Bridges to create model structures, machines and prototypes of inventions the school’s Maker’s Place.

“We will also purchase digital cameras so that they can record their progress as they work through steps of the engineering design process,” she wrote.

“Mrs. Hamman’s dedication to providing authentic, STEAM-related learning opportunities for our students is truly noteworthy. Shauna’s receipt of this award is yet another example of how she continually sets the bar high for catalyzing 21st Century learning in her classroom,” Principal Jeff Beickel said.